‘I respect the real fans’ – West Ham flop defiant in face of criticism
By Guy Giles
West Ham record signing Marko Arnautovic has moved to reassure fans that he is focused and working hard to make an impact after being heavily criticised for his poor form since joining the club.
Austria international Arnautovic joined the club for a record fee of £24million from Stoke City in the summer, but has failed to register a single goal or assist in his seven Premier League appearances so far.
Arnautovic has come in for some heavy criticism since the sacking of Slaven Bilic after the Croatian was dismissed for West Ham’s poor start to the season that leaves them languishing in the relegation zone.
The winger, who has 66 caps for his country, has now spoken out against the criticism that has been levelled at him in the past week or so.
Speaking to Austrian broadcaster Laola1, Arnautovic said: “I respect the real fans and I understand them. They were all happy to have me come to West Ham because I had done very well at Stoke.
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“But the fans only see what happens in the stadium, they do not see what you do at training and in private.
“I know how strong I am mentally, how I work on myself. I have lost nothing and I’m not in crisis. West Ham can count on me 100 per cent.”
The West Ham board have appointed former Manchester United boss David Moyes as Bilic’s replacement, and the Scot will be hoping to bring the best out of Arnautovic and help the Hammers avoid a relegation fight this season.
In other West Ham news, this club senior figure has criticised their summer signings in the wake of Bilic’s sacking.