The England striker is currently ineligible to play competitive football following his eight-month ban for breaching FA betting rules. He has started training with the first-team squad at Brentford, but won’t be permitted to return to the playing field until January 17th.
This has not dampened the speculation over his future and Caught Offside mention that Chelsea & Arsenal have already spoken to the striker’s representatives and consider him as a winter target.
It is claimed that he could be available for £55 million, much less than the £100 million price tag previously mentioned. While £55m would already be a bargain for Toney, the report says Arsenal are hoping to lower the asking price further.
Toney, described as ‘world-class‘ by his manager, has established himself as one of the best-performing strikers in the English top-flight. He scored on 20 occasions in the last league campaign before being banned for breaching betting rules in May. This meant that there were no proposals to sign him last summer but the scenario will be different in 2024.
Both Chelsea and Arsenal are lagging in the no.9 department. Nicolas Jackson has been a hit-and-miss since his move from Villarreal and the Blues need someone who is more consistent leading the line. The same could be said for the Gunners with Gabriel Jesus and Eddie Nketiah not being regular goalgetters.
Leandro Trossard is another player who has played up front for them, but he is more of a winger. Both clubs need a strong focal point up front which Toney possesses. Chelsea are also looking at Victor Osimhen and any move for Toney may be dependent on how they want to proceed with their interest in the Nigerian star.
If Osimhen gives the green light for a summer move from Napoli, the Blues may not want to invest on Toney, considering they have Christopher Nkunku coming back from a serious knee injury. Arsenal could also play the waiting game until the summer if Jesus, Nketiah or Trossard get into a rich vein of scoring form soon.