ESPN pundit Janusz Michalilk has advised Brentford striker Ivan Toney, a Chelsea target, to join Arsenal.
Toney, 27, returned from an eight-month ban last month, due to illegal betting, and has scored twice in three top-flight games. Playing the full 90 minutes, Toney scored in the 3-2 home win over Nottingham Forest and the 3-2 defeat at Tottenham Hotspur. However, he drew a blank in the 3-1 defeat at home to Manchester City last weekend.
With little over a year left in his contract, the Englishman is widely tipped to move out in the summer, having stayed put during the recently concluded January transfer window.
Michalik reckons the Gunners would be the ‘perfect’ option for Toney, explaining (via Football Fancast):
“He’s a great number nine in terms of hold-up: he can assist; he can score. He’s great on set-pieces. His pace, his size, his stamina, just about everything. You tell me a player like that.
Admitting that he could enrich Arsenal, Manchester United, Real Madrid as well as Chelsea, the pundit said that considering the situations at all four clubs, the Gunners look to be a ‘perfect match’ for the Brentford man:
“He takes Arsenal to the next level, he takes Manchester United to the next level. I don’t care if Hojlund’s there or not. We’ve talked about Real Madrid, how many players you need and all that. So all those three teams: Chelsea for sure.
“But yeah, I think if I’m Ivan Toney and I look at the projects where they currently are, and it’s my big move, maybe the only big move a player like Ivan Toney’s going to make, no doubt, in his mind and on Arsenal’s mind, this is a perfect match.”
Toney has proven Premier League pedigree, with 34 goals in 71 games, and would be an immediate upgrade on the Gunners’ current options up front.
What’s next for Chelsea?
Chelsea have blown hot and cold this season, especially in the league, where successive heavy defeats have dropped them to 11th in the standings.
They’re a whopping 15 points behind fourth-placed Aston Villa (48) in the fourth and final UEFA Champions League spot. However, Mauricio Pochettino’s side are coming off a 3-1 FA Cup fourth-round replay win at Aston Villa on Wednesday (February 7), their second win in seven away games across competitions.
The Blues next take on Crystal Palace away in the league on Monday (February 12) before travelling to three-time defending champions Manchester City five days later.