Marko Arnautovic did not leave Stoke City in the summer on the most pleasant of terms.
The 28-year-old forward made the move to West Ham United in the summer for a club-record £25m fee, almost a year after signing a new four-year deal at the Bet365 Stadium.
The Potters’ reluctance to let Arnautovic leave forced the player into submitting a transfer request.
Eventually, the Austrian sealed his desired move, but the attacker did not have the best start to life at the London Stadium.
In just his second Premier League game for the Hammers, Arnautovic was sent off in a 3-2 defeat to Southampton at St Mary’s.
In 15 outings in all competitions, the forward has only found the back of the net once, which was last weekend in a shock 1-0 victory over Chelsea on home soil.
Ahead of Arnautovic’s first return to Stoke this Saturday, Matthew Etherington – who has played for both the Potters and West Ham in his career – believes that the attacker will not be welcomed back with open arms.
The former winger told talkSPORT:
“I don’t think they’ll be too friendly! I’ve played with the Stoke fans and they’re fantastic if they’re on your side, but they can be very hostile and the manner in which he went left a sour taste in the Stoke fans’ mouth. Marko’s a decent player and I’m sure that’ll galvanise him. He will get a frosty reception, no doubt about that.”
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