Gabby Agbonlahor says he would prefer to play Marko Arnautovic over Jadon Sancho at Manchester United and has urged the club's fans to "stop living in the Fergie years" when it comes to their transfer expectations.
United entered into talks to sign former Stoke City and West Ham striker Arnautovic from Bologna this month but pulled out of negotiations on Tuesday after having a £7.2m bid rejected by the Italian club.
The decision to end their interest in the striker also came after an overwhelmingly negative response from United supporters to the potential signing.
Former Aston Villa striker Agbonlahor believes Arnautovic would have made United a stronger team this season and believes Red Devils fans need to be more realistic when it comes to the transfer market this summer.
"I don't know who United fans think they are," Agbonlahor said on talkSPORT.
"Arnautovic makes that United squad a better squad. They've got to stop living in the Fergie years. Manchester United are now a club that can't attract top players.
"There's talk about 'let's look to the future, let's look at younger players'. They've done that with Sancho and he can't take anyone on. He gets the ball and then passes it back to [Diogo] Dalot. He can't head, he doesn't attack players and get past players.
"Look at the wingers Manchester United have had in the past. [Antonio] Valencia… he used to run and take players on, get crosses in. Even Nani was outstanding for United, taking players on and getting crosses in.
😡 “Who do Man Utd fans think they are?!”— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) August 10, 2022
👀 “They’re not in the Fergie years now. I would rather have Arnautovic than Sancho!”
🔥 “They aren’t shopping at Harrods anymore! Man Utd are at a different place.”@Ga11Agbon would rather have Arnautovic at #MUFC than Jadon Sancho 😳 pic.twitter.com/3gydzrB49L
"Jadon Sancho doesn't do that now. I'd rather have Arnautovic in my Manchester United team that Jadon Sancho at the moment."
The Athletic have reported that United received a number of complaints from supporters about the idea of signing Arnautovic.
One such complaint was sent by Michael Damevski, a fan of North Macedonian descent, who penned a message to United questioning how signing Arnautovic would correspond to the club's zero tolerance approach to racism.
Last year, the striker was handed a one-match ban after he used an alleged anti-Albanian slur during his country's match against North Macedonia at Euro 2020.
Concerns were also raised by fans on social media over Arnautovic's suitability for the team and his age, with the Austria international now 33.
But Agbonlahor believes age should not have been a factor in the club's decision whether to sign Arnautovic.
"I don't think it matters. If he makes that team better for a season then get him in, he's a manager's choice,” he added.
"Forget about what the fans think. After he scores two goals they'll change their mind and their opinion.
"They're not shopping at Harrods anymore, they're at a different place now. They are a different Manchester United to of old."
Featured Image Credit: Alamy & talkSPORT
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