Manchester United pull out of deal to sign attacker due to fan outrage over alleged racist behavior: Reports

Ten Hag's reunion with former FC Twente striker is off the cards
Ten Hag's reunion with former FC Twente striker is off the cards
Akshay Tahiliani

Manchester United have reportedly decided against signing Bologna striker Marko Arnautovic owing to fan outrage against the player. There are concerns about the player as he has made racist comments in the past. Allowing Arnautovic to join the club would have been at odds with the club's stance against racism of all kinds.

The Athletic reported that the Italian club were expecting an improved offer from Manchester United for the Austrian but the English side have decided to end their interest. A bid worth €8 million is believed to have been rejected by Bologna straight away.

The Red Devils have received multiple complaints from their fans who are displeased by the club's attempt to bring Arnautovic to Old Trafford. The 33-year-old was accused of using an anti-Albanian racist slur at the Euros last year, which also landed him a one-match ban.

However, after the game, the Austrian took to social media to plead his innocence and insisted that he was not a racist.

That Manchester United were in for Marko Arnautovic in the first place, and are only pulling out of the deal due to being priced out by Bologna and rightful opposition by the fanbase, stinks of absolute lack of strategy.

Supporters wrote emails to the club to express their disapproval of the potential move while asking United to reconsider their approach. One Michael Damevski, who is of North Macedonian descent, highlighted that welcoming Arnautovic to Old Trafford would contradict the club's zero-tolerance approach to racism.

A club staff member replied to Damevski that his concerns had been noted. The UK outlet also reported that Manchester United CEO Richard Arnold also received direct emails from fans who were against signing the Austrian.

Back in 2009, the former West Ham United and Stoke City striker was accused of racially abusing an opponent while playing for FC Twente. Clearly, having a player with such a controversial background wouldn't be in the Manchester outfit's reputation.

Why were Manchester United willing to sign the former West Ham striker?

There are still concerns over Cristiano Ronaldo's future at Old Trafford despite the veteran featuring in the side league opener against Brighton, a game they lost 2-1. Erik ten Hag wants to add an attacking option to the squad in case the Portuguese international leaves due to any last-minute developments.

In Arnautovic, the Dutchman saw a figure he was familiar with and someone who would be a short-term fix at a cheap price. Ten Hag and his assistant Steve McClaren worked with the striker during their time at Twente between 2007 and 2010.

🗣 "I've got a comment on everything in the world apart from Manchester United signing Marko Arnautović today." 🤣@GNev2's reaction to Manchester United making a bid for Marko Arnautović

Moreover, the Austrian has Premier League experience as he previously played for West Ham and Stoke City. Whether he would have been a regular starter for Manchester United is highly debatable. However, Ten Hag will have had something planned before bidding for Arnautovic.

Edited by Ritwik Kumar


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