Ivan Toney has decided which club out of Arsenal and Chelsea that he would prefer to join in January.
The Brentford striker is currently serving the final few months of his gambling ban, but is back in training with the west London side. Plenty of speculation remains surrounding his future, however, with Toney's contract set to expire in June 2025.
Both Arsenal and Chelsea have shown interest in signing him in January in recent months, as they both search for a goalscorer to address their issues in front of goals. Toney is a proven finisher in the Premier League, having bagged 32 goals in the top flight in the past two seasons.
But according to Fabrizio Romano, Ivan Toney would prefer to join Arsenal over Chelsea in January, with a move certainly possible. Though a hefty price tag is required to prise Toney away from Brentford in the window winter, the fact he'll have just 18 months remaining on his contract could force their hand.
Romano also suggests that Chelsea aren't settled on pursuing Toney anyway, with the striker's age a problem. Still only 27, the Blues have reportedly employed an under-25 transfer policy.
“For Arsenal I would include Ivan Toney, because he’s another possibility for Arsenal,” Romano said.
"He’s also on the list of Chelsea, but Chelsea are not 100% convinced about Toney. Also, from what I am hearing, the player’s idea is more on Arsenal."
That doesn't mean a deal is a foregone conclusion, however. The Gunners will still have to match Brentford's £60m-plus demands for the England international, which is a considerable outlay for someone who hasn't kicked a ball competitively in eight months.
What's more, Arsenal have FFP considerations this January, having spent over £200m in the summer. Quite simply, they might not even be able to afford that price tag. Regardless, Toney is reportedly more in favour of a move to the Emirates Stadium, which could spell trouble for the rest of the Premier League.
More Ivan Toney and Arsenal stories
A European giant has also joined the race for Toney's signature, but could it be too little, too late?
Arsenal could face a tricky January transfer window, with the club reportedly 'sailing close to the wind' when it comes to Financial Fair Play.
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