Football pundit Stan Collymore has written in his column for The Mirror (November 20, page 51) that he can envisage Marko Arnautovic leaving West Ham United in the same manner as Dimitri Payet.
Payet broke many a Hammer’s heart when he forced his way out of the club in January last year.
The Frenchman, who was the club’s best player at the time, went on strike, such was his desire to return to his former club Marseille.
In the end, Payet was granted his wish, but he left on bad terms, with plenty of fans still feeling hatred towards him.
The situation involving Arnautovic is nowhere near reaching that level, but Collymore believes that it could eventually after the striker suggested in Austrian newspaper Kurier that he would consider leaving the Hammers to play at a higher level.
In his column for The Mirror (November 20, page 51), Collymore wrote:
“I said a couple of months ago that Marko Arnautovic didn’t have a personality you could rely on and one or two West Ham fans got upset with me.
“But, actually, it’s not what he has been doing on the pitch that has backed me up, it’s the fact that when he does do it on the pitch, he feels he deserves better than the Hammers. It’s looking a lot like the Dimitri Payet situation to me.”
During international breaks, more often than not, quotes are misconstrued by media outlets.
If Arnautovic does have an ambition to move to a club competing in the Champions League, then no fan could begrudge him that as almost every player wants to be challenging for top honours.
There is no reason why the attacker could not leave the London Stadium on amicable terms, although the supporters would be crushed.
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It is understandable why Collymore has drawn this comparison given than Arnautovic has made waves at the past when trying to instigate a transfer.
What happened with Payet, though, tends to be very rare, and it is hard to see the Austrian disrespecting a club that has given him a new lease of life.