Stoke City boss Mark Hughes has told the Stoke Sentinel that West Ham United’s bid for winger Marko Arnautovic was not reasonable.
The Potters were left stunned on Monday afternoon, as star forward Arnautovic handed in a transfer request as he looks to force a move away from the bet365 Stadium this summer.
Arnautovic, 28, has hit 26 goals in 145 games for Stoke since joining from Werder Bremen in 2013, and he notched six goals and five assists in 32 Premier League appearances last season.
The Austrian international signed a new four-year deal last summer, but just one year into that, he is already looking to move on to another club ahead of the new Premier League season.
It remains to be seen whether clubs can tempt Stoke into selling Arnautovic, but West Ham United have already tried and failed, according to reports.
Stoke have rejected a £15million bid from the Hammers according to The Telegraph, with the Potters bracing themselves for a second offer from Slaven Bilic’s men.
Now, Stoke boss Mark Hughes has confirmed that Arnautovic and his representatives have asked for a move, but the final decision will ultimately rest with the club, given that the former Inter Milan loanee is contracted to the club until 2020.
Hughes, speaking to the Stoke Sentinel, added that the offer received wasn’t reasonable enough for Stoke to even consider, and the Potters have not put him up for sale this summer either.
“Well, Marko and his people have put in a transfer request but that happens on occasions,” said Hughes. “Any comings and goings are at our discretion and it’s our decision ultimately. Players can express an opinion or a view in terms of where they see their future but at the end of the day contracted players are contracted to the club and ultimately we have the final say.”
“We’ve never put him up for sale, we’ve never said he’s for sale. Maybe clubs – and why wouldn’t they? – see a good player at another club and I would imagine there would be some interest from maybe one club. There’s been a bid but bids have to be reasonable and that one wasn’t,” he added.