The Austrian has been the subject of a £35million bid from China and the player is reportedly keen to make the move.
Former Arsenal and England defender Keown reckons West Ham need to keep hold of their prized asset at all costs.
Keown told Football Focus: “It would be a disaster for him to leave.
“Everybody is searching for a player of this type, (like Arnautovic) defenders bounce off him, he has quality in front of goal.
“He is taking ownership for his career and is a much better player now.”
News of the possible transfer broke last week after Shanghai SIPG submitted a bid for the former Stoke forward.
The 29-year-old stayed silent after the bid was placed but his brother/agent Danijel Arnautovic revealed his brother’s mindset in a statement he gave to talkSPORT.
The statement read: ”West Ham bought Marko for peanuts. They paid £20m for him, which is nothing in the current market.
“They bought him to keep them in the Premier League last season and he did that.
“He took every award at the club; best player, signing of the season and the players’ award.
“Now West Ham have a fantastic offer. It is close to double what they paid for him.
“He wants to go to a new market and challenge for titles. This is what he wants.
“It is his great desire that West Ham accept the offer from China.
“He knows the West Ham fans love him and he has a special connection with them, but things move on, this is the world of sport, and he hopes they can understand.
“Until he is no longer a West Ham player, he will give everything to the club. He hopes the fans can respect his wishes.”
Former West Ham defender Gary O’Neil believes that Arnautovic should stay and ply his trade in the Premier League.
O’Neil told talkSPORT2: ”It’s like what happened with [Dimitri] Payet, Arnautovic will have all the power in this situation,”
“But if he goes to China he’s ending his career competitively.”
West Ham’s official statement on the matter reads: ”Marko Arnautovic has a contract and we fully expect him to honour it.”
Daily Express :: Sport Feed