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Marko Arnautovic Opens Up On Struggles Adapting To Life In China During Incredibly Honest Interview

Marko Arnautovic Opens Up On Struggles Adapting To Life In China During Incredibly Honest Interview

Shanghai SIPG striker Marco Arnautovic admits he "underestimated" the Chinese Super League when he first joined.

The 31-year-old completed a £23 million move to Shanghai from West Ham in July last year after a long-standing battle with the Premier League side over a move away.

Image: PA
Image: PA

Arnautovic has since gone on to score 12 goals in 15 appearances for the CSL side, but the Austrian has confessed to not treating the league with respect when he first arrived.

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In an interview via Beanyman Sports, he admitted to drinking fizzy drinks and not taking training seriously.

"I underestimated it," Arnautovic said. "I didn't train. I didn't look after my body. I was eating. I was drinking fizzy drinks - Sprite, Coca Cola, Fanta - all these sugar drinks that are not good for the body."

"Eating at wrong times. Not sleeping, because when I came to China it took me about three weeks until I could adapt to the time.

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"I went to bed at 6, 7 o'clock in the morning. I woke up 3, 4 o'clock in the afternoon, went to training, stayed up again all night, eating at wrong times."

Arnautovic did eventually take things more seriously after seeing the standard of play.

"This is exactly what I said before. Now I just put in my mind the club wanted me to come, to do well, to play for the title, and I changed because I need to do better and I need to be better. Otherwise you can't play here."

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Just months before his move to the Chinese Super League, Arnautovic expressed his desire to stay at West Ham.

"I want to put offers aside, help the club climb as high as possible in the table and try to win the cup," he said back in January 2019.

"I guess it's no secret that there has been an offer for me and I have to admit that the offer was a very tempting one for me and my family.

"I have given 100 [per cent] to my club duties, but I have also needed some time to talk to my club, my wife and the rest of my family. I have now decided to put a stop to all the writings and speculation.

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Arnautovic praying he gets to move to China. Image: PA Images
Arnautovic praying he gets to move to China. Image: PA Images

"It is clear that London and West Ham United feels like home for me and I hope the West Ham fans have always seen that.

"Let's focus on the rest of this season together and let those bubbles fly."

Thoughts on Arnautovic's recent comments? Should he have left the Premier League for China?

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Let us know in the comments.

Topics: Football News, Football, Marko Arnautovic, Chinese Super League, West Ham, Interview

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Jack Kenmare

Jack Kenmare is a writer at SPORTbible. He's interviewed some of the biggest names in sport, including Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Pele, Carles Puyol and Tim Henman. He dabbles in all things sport but football is his biggest passion. He was once hit in the head by a wayward strike from Nicky Butt and lived to tell the tale.