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Fan protest? Real reason for Arnautovic's Man Utd transfer snub revealed

8:38 AM EDT 9/29/22
marko-arnautovic
Bologna director Marco Di Vaio has rubbished reports suggesting that Marko Arnautovic did not join Manchester United due to a fan protest.
  • Austrian linked with Red Devils
  • Rumours of supporter unrest
  • Experienced star still in Serie A

WHAT HAPPENED? With the Red Devils in the market for attacking reinforcements during the summer transfer window, their sights were set at one stage on an enigmatic Austria international that has previously played in the Premier League at West Ham. Despite the fact that Arnautovic has been catching the eye in Serie A since returning to European football from China, there were claims that United supporters reacted angrily to links with a 33-year-old frontman and that attention was quickly shifted elsewhere at Old Trafford.

WHAT THEY SAID: Di Vaio insists that was never the case, telling Corriere dello Sport of why no deal was done with English heavyweights: “We did great work with Marko. We’ve always highlighted how much we trust him. Juventus never made a direct request, United did it indeed. United didn’t retire from the race because of their fans, but only because Arnautovic understood how important he was for Bologna’s project. He behaved like a true champion, understanding what he meant to Bologna as a city and a club. He’s a point of reference on and off the pitch. I was surprised by his involvement. He is helping young players. He has an ‘English’ approach. He always gives his all.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Arnautovic joined Bologna in the summer of 2021 and has hit 21 goals for them through 42 appearances – with six efforts in the current campaign seeing him top the Serie A scoring charts.

IN THREE PHOTOS:

WHAT NEXT FOR ARNAUTOVIC? United will not be returning for the Austrian as they eventually lured Brazilian star Antony away from Ajax during the last window and are exploring other options when it comes to getting another proven No.9 on board.