Arsenal football club and their London rivals, Chelsea are reportedly set to battle for the signature of embattled Brentford striker Ivan Toney.
Ivan Toney is currently serving an eight-month ban after pleading guilty to 232 gambling-related crimes in May 2023.
The 27-year-old England international was handed a lesser sentence due to a known gambling addiction, and he won’t be allowed to play professional football until January 17, 2024.
On September 17, four months before the ban ended, he resumed training with Brentford in line with the conditions of his ban.
Even though he was banned before the 2022-2023 season ended, Ivan Toney still managed to score 20 goals for Brentford as he ended the season as the club’s top scorer and the third-best striker in the Premier League.
Mirror Sport reported that Brentford are willing to sell the Englishman to any club who are willing to pay at least £60 million for his services.
Earlier today, September 25, a report from the Mirror claimed that Arsenal are stepping up their interest in the Englishman which means that there could be a transfer battle between the two London-based clubs in January.
Reports in England claimed that Arsenal’s coach Mikel Arteta sees Ivan Toney as a striker who could boost the club’s chances of winning the Premier League title.
Recall that during last summer’s transfer window, Arsenal made some ambitious moves including signing Declan Rice from West Ham United for a club-record fee of £105 million.
They also added Kai Havertz from Chelsea as they aim to better their last season’s campaign in which they finished second behind first-placed Manchester City.
Even though Arteta has options in attack like Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Jesus, the addition of Ivan Toney would make them more competitive in the remaining part of the 2023-2024 season.
Arsenal are currently sitting 5th on the Premier League table with 14 points in five games after four wins and two draws. They are yet to record a defeat so far.