Marko Arnautovic has performed a massive U-turn with the Austrian forward dismissing speculation linking him with a move away from West Ham, despite reports earlier on Friday that the Hammers had finally agreed to let him to leave.
The Austrian has been the subject of intense speculation in recent weeks since the opening of the January transfer window, with two Chinese Super League sides registering their interest in the forward.
Despite the Hammers insisting that the 29-year-old was not for sale, Sky Sports News reported earlier on Friday afternoon that this stance had changed.
The report claimed that Manuel Pellegrini’s side were willing to negotiate Arnautovic’s sale this month so long as they received an offer worth £50m.
But, in an Instagram post, the striker admitted he had now turned down a potential move away from the London Stadium and he therefore wanted to ‘put the offers aside’ and ‘help the club to climb as high as possible’.
Pellegrini dropped the Austrian for last week’s Premier League defeat to Bournemouth, and had once again left him out of the matchday squad for the Hammers’ FA Cup tie at AFC Wimbledon.
Chinese side Guangzhou Evergrande were thought to be the frontrunners for Arnautovic’s signature, and had already seen two offers in the region of €35m and €40m knocked back recently.
Despite Arnautovic’s potential departure seemingly now dead in the water, West Ham continue to be linked with a move for Celta Vigo forward Maxi Gomez, who has a reported £43.5m release clause in his contract. That move could go quiet very quickly.