Ivan Toney’s record-breaking season in the Championship has not gone unnoticed by Premier League clubs, a whole host of top-flight sides understood to be monitoring the Brentford hitman.
Toney finished the Championship season with 31 league goals, an incredible haul in his maiden season with Brentford after stepping up from League One side Peterborough.
That haul eclipsed the landmark set by Glenn Murray during the 2012/13 season and Toney will now be hoping to fire the Bees into the Premier League as the club prepare for their play-off campaign, facing Bournemouth in the semi-finals as Thomas Franks’ side seek to go one better after last season’s final disappointment.
Whether Brentford make it to the promised land or not, there’s a high chance that Toney will be playing Premier League football next season.
So, for those of you interested in football betting, here are the five favourites to sign Ivan Toney.
Arsenal – 8/1
Arsenal have been linked with a whole host of forward targets ahead of the summer window, uncertainty surrounding the futures of Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah with both players set to enter the final years of their respective deals.
Lacazette is the Gunners’ leading scorer this season and it remains to be seen whether a new deal is agreed for a player set to turn 30 this summer, though Nketiah is expected to depart in search of regular first-team football after just four league starts in 2020/21.
Signing for Arsenal would offer a significant step up for Toney, though the self-confident star will back himself to succeed in the Premier League following his rise through the ranks after failing to earn an opportunity at Newcastle.
An Arsenal move for Toney would surprise with the north London side linked with the likes of Moussa Dembele and Odsonne Edouard of late, though their reported interest is a sign of the progress the 25-year-old has made.
Leicester – 7/1
Leicester are another side in need of attacking reinforcements this summer, with Brendan Rodgers’ side in need of a long-term replacement for Jamie Vardy.
The Foxes need for a forward has perhaps lessened following Kelechi Iheanacho’s outstanding second half to the campaign, with the Nigeria international having hit the finest form over his career since the turn of the new year.
Leicester look set to secure European qualification again next season however, and squad depth will be crucial to Rodgers and his side if they are to compete on multiple fronts, with Vardy set to turn 35 midway through next season.
Odsonne Edouard appears the most likely signing with Rodgers having worked with the prolific Frenchman at Celtic, though Toney offers an interesting alternative and would join an exciting and hungry home-grown contingent at the King Power Stadium.
West Ham – 6/1
David Moyes has overseen a fine season of progression at West Ham this season, taking a team that narrowly avoided relegation last season to the cusp of a place in Europe next season.
Moyes’ achievements are all the more impressive given the Hammers have lacked centre-forward options for much of the campaign, with Michail Antonio struggling with fitness issues and the club deciding to cut their losses on disappointing club-record signing Sebastian Haller in January.
Jesse Lingard and Jarrod Bowen have covered well in Antonio’s absence, but depth is certainly needed given his injury record and the likelihood of West Ham competing in Europe next season.
The Hammers have been linked with signing Tammy Abraham from Chelsea and were linked with a move for Sevilla’s Youssef En-Nesyri during the winter window, though Moyes has been cautious regarding his side’s funds and said earlier this month West Ham won’t splash big-money on a striker.
Each of those players – alongside Toney – is likely to cost in excess of £30m.
Brighton – 6/1
Brighton have spent much of the season near the bottom of the Premier League table, a scenario in large part down to the Seagulls’ inability to convert chances.
Neil Maupay is the club’s leading scorer this season on just eight goals in the Premier League, with centre-back Lewis Dunk and Danny Welbeck having netted five apiece.
Graham Potter’s side have an xG figure of 51.47 so far this season, but have scored just 36 goals for the campaign – the biggest goalscoring underperformance in the Premier League in 2020/21.
Toney has netted 71 league goals over the past three seasons across the lower divisions, but looks more than ready for the step up a division and could be the solution to Brighton’s wastefulness in front of goal.
Everton – 5/1
Everton have been priced as 5/1 favourites to sign Toney from Brentford this summer, with Carlo Ancelotti having spoken of his desire to improve the Toffees squad following a season of improvement on Merseyside.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin has shouldered the majority of Everton’s goalscoring burden this season, enjoying a career-best campaign that has included 16 league goals and regular involvement with the England senior side.
Beyond the 24-year-old there is a lack of centre-forward depth however, Richarlison and winter window signing Josh King offering cover without being genuine and like-for-like alternatives.
Everton are prepared to invest again despite posting huge losses for the 2019/20 financial year and backed by Farhad Moshiri’s billionas are perhaps one of the few Premier League clubs prepared to splash the cash in the current climate.