Talk Sport

West Ham captain Mark Noble understands why Marko Arnautovic wants to leave

West Ham captain Mark Noble says he understands why Marko Arnautovic wants to leave the club.

The forward’s agent and brother, Danijel, released a statement to talkSPORT urging Hammers chiefs to sell the Austria international to an unnamed Chinese club, who offered £35million for his services last week.

Marko Arnautovic appeared to wave goodbye to West Ham supporters on Saturday

The club, believed to be Shanghai SIPG, are reportedly set to submit a new, improved offer for Arnautovic worth £40million.

Arnautovic is believed to want the move, but Noble, who has made over 400 appearances for West Ham, hopes Arnautovic stays at the London Stadium.

He told The Times: “Marko said ‘Mark, whatever happens it is out of my hands, but as long as I play for this football team, I’m going to give 100 per cent’.

“And you saw that. Marko has got a reputation of maybe being a little sulky, but let me tell you he is a great lad around the dressing room. He is fantastic to have around there.

“Do we hope he doesn’t go? Of course, he’s probably our best player. But I always think it is such a short career.

Mark Noble is a fans’ favourite at the London Stadium

“You work until you are 35 and then you have got to find another living, you go to China for five years on £400,000 a week, you don’t.”

Arnautovic’s desire to leave has been compared to Dimitri Payet’s sour exit from West Ham two years ago.

The Frenchman refused to play for Slaven Bilic’s side after the club rejected a bid from Marseille.

Payet eventually left the Hammers in a £25million deal as joint-chairman David Sullivan slammed his lack of commitment and respect to the club.

Speaking about the comparisons between Payet and Arnautovic, Noble added: “It’s a completely different circumstance.

“We didn’t keep Dimi and he was our best player at the time – I’m hoping this one is a bit different.

“If you are realistic, you can always see the football player’s point of view, he’s got kids and he wants to secure their future.

“Obviously he is earning fantastic money here, but the money in China is a different kettle of fish.”


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