‘He is a very good player so maybe a lot of clubs will want him’: West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini not surprised by interest in Marko Arnautovic after rejecting £36m bid from China
- Manuel Pellegrini has played down talk of Marko Arnautovic leaving West Ham
- The Hammers have rejected a bid of £36m from a Chinese Super League club
- Pellegrini says he wants to keep Arnautovic, but a £50m bid could change that
- Samir Nasri is likely to play a part against his former club Arsenal on Saturday
Tom Farmery For Mailonline
Manuel Pellegrini says he isn’t surprised Marko Arnautovic is attracting significant interest but doesn’t expect him to leave this month after West Ham rejected an offer of £36million from China.
Sportsmail understands that an improved bid from a club in the Chinese Super League will be made and a wage of £200,000 a week is expected to be offered to Arnautovic.
But speaking ahead of West Ham’s Premier League clash with Arsenal on Saturday, Pellegrini played down talk of Arnautovic leaving before the January transfer window closes.
Marko Arnautovic celebrates after scoring against Birmingham in the FA Cup last weekend
West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini is confident Arnautovic will remain at the club
He said: ‘They are rumours. We know Marko is a very good player so maybe a lot of clubs will want him to play for their team but at the moment he is a West Ham player and we want to keep him.
‘I think Marko and all the other players involved in rumours have their heads here and want to continue playing the way they are doing so far.
‘I am sure his head will be in the game against Arsenal and it will not affect his performance. I don’t think he will leave.’
The Hammers could be tempted to sell the 29-year-old should they receive an offer of £50m.
Arnautovic cost West Ham £22m and has impressed Pellegrini, who describes him as a ‘top player’.
Chelsea, Manchester United, Inter Milan and Everton have all shown interest in recent months
Arnautovic nods home his side’s opening goal against Birmingham at the London Stadium
Arnautovic scored 11 times last season and has eight goals in 17 appearances this term, including a double in last week’s 2-2 draw at home to Brighton.
Meanwhile, Pellegrini is expecting Samir Nasri to play against his former club Arsenal at the weekend. He made his debut in the FA Cup third round win at home to Birmingham.
Pellegrini added: ‘I think it was very useful for him to play 60 minutes in the FA Cup.
‘He has been working hard for around 40 days and he has demonstrated he is able to be involved against Arsenal, at least in the squad list.’
Samir Nasri is likely to play a part against his old club Arsenal after playing an hour last week