The North London Battle for Brentford’s Star Striker
The story surrounding Brentford’s Ivan Toney has been nothing short of a rollercoaster. Despite his absence from the pitch – a result of an eight-month hiatus due to breaching the Football Association’s betting rules – his stock has only risen. It’s almost poetic: a striker who hasn’t graced the pitch since May yet finds himself at the heart of a North London tussle.
This isn’t without reason. His 20 goals in 38 Premier League matches secured him the title of third top scorer, only behind the likes of Kane and Haaland. That’s elite company for a player from a newly-promoted side.
The North London Dilemma
Both Arsenal and Tottenham have made no secret of their admiration for Toney. However, even in a world of inflated football valuations, they’ve reportedly baulked at Brentford’s €70m (£61m) price tag. The source of this revelation? Fichajes.
Arsenal’s attacking department is a curious mix. They have the likes of Eddie Nketiah, who’s fresh off his first Premier League hat-trick against Sheffield United. Then there’s Gabriel Jesus, the promising striker persistently shackled by injuries. His latest misfortune saw him missing out on a Champions League encounter with Sevilla.
Spurs, on the other hand, are still dealing with the Kane-shaped hole in their frontline. Though Bayern Munich’s new star striker has departed, Son Heung-min has stepped up admirably, boasting eight goals in the first 10 league fixtures, ensuring Spurs remain unbeaten.
Evaluating Brentford’s Stance
Brentford, often dubbed the ‘moneyball’ club of the Premier League, are sticking to their valuation. Understandably so, Toney is a hot commodity. They’re in a position of power, knowing full well that several top-flight clubs are lurking.
Yet, there’s an interesting sub-plot. Toney’s contract with Brentford runs down in 2025, giving him just over two years left. This might play into the hands of interested parties, like Arsenal and Spurs, as they try to bring the asking price down a notch.
The Bigger Picture
While Arsenal and Spurs continue their dance around Toney, Chelsea wait in the wings, ready to swoop in. The Blues have shown interest, hoping to bolster their attacking arsenal in January.