Film study: Ivan Toney
Brentford's striker is admired by many Arsenal fans. What would he bring to the squad?
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Arsenal are being linked with a striker.
This time it’s Ivan Toney, the man who lives a good kickabout with the boys, as well as a good aerial duel and a good penalty kick.
Toney, one of the more lusted-after players amongst Arsenal fans over the past several seasons, has missed the past few months (and remains out until January) while serving a ban due to betting on games. When he returns, he’ll be two months short of 28 years of age, as he’s just 10 days younger than the likes of Timo Werner and about nine months older than Oleksandr Zinchenko.
Toney’s career has been anything but typical up to this point. To date, he’s generated transfer fees totaling about £6m, most of which was paid by Brentford, who acquired him from Peterborough United for £5m in 2020.
Toney is originally a Northampton Town product and joined Newcastle for a song in 2015. But he only made two league appearances totaling 12 minutes for a Magpies side headed for relegation that year, before starting on a long list of loans. Over a three-season period, Toney scored 24 goals in about 50 90s’ worth of minutes while loaned out to the likes of Shrewsbury, Scunthorpe and Wigan, all in League One while he played there. For the 2018-19 season, Peterborough signed him, and he took off from there.
Toney scored 40 goals (only 2 PKs) in his two seasons (66 90s) at Peterborough before leveling up to Brentford in the Championship for the COVID-complicated 2020-2021 season. And while there, he scored 31 goals (9 PKs) and racked up 10 assists while leading the Bees to promotion. Of course, he’s scored 32 league goals (11 PKs) and gathered 9 assists in about 65 Premier League 90s since.
This is the part where I’d normally post Toney’s chart over that time, but my friend Scott already has you covered there with a post from earlier this week. Click over and check it out if you’d like some charts, maps and more.
But you didn’t come here for a chart, did you? You came for video! So let’s dive in: I watched back three Toney full games from this past season (including his game at the Emirates) looking for all the pros and cons of his game. So, is Brentford’s star man worth £80m to the likes of Arsenal, even if he’s pushing 28? Let’s get into it.
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