Southgate reveals he's been 'very impressed' by Brentford star Toney

Gareth Southgate reveals England staff have been ‘very impressed’ by Ivan Toney and the Brentford striker is being ‘monitored closely’ for selection

  • Brentford’s Ivan Toney scored a record number of Championship goals last term 
  • The 25-year-old has continued to shine in the Premier League with the Bees 
  • Gareth Southgate says Toney needs to keep scoring to get an England call-up 
  • Tammy Abraham is also on Southgate’s radar after a good start to life at Roma

Gareth Southgate has revealed that he is keeping a close eye on Ivan Toney – but indicated that the Brentford striker needs to score in the Premier League for a more sustained period before he can be picked by England. 

Toney scored a record 31 Championship goals in the regular season last term as Thomas Frank’s men were promoted following their 2-0 play-off final win over Swansea at Wembley in May.

The Bees have gone from strength since and currently sit ninth after six games and just one defeat having outplayed Arsenal on the opening day of the campaign and most recently drawn 3-3 with Liverpool.

Ivan Toney was the main man last season as his record number of goals helped Brentford go up

The 25-year has continued to impress in the Premier League along with his team-mates

Gareth Southgate feels Toney must continue scoring at the top level to get an England call-up

Toney has been instrumental in the west London’s success in the top flight with two goals and two assists to his name and speaking ahead of England’s 2022 World Cup qualifiers with Andorra and Hungary, Southgate explained what the 25-year-old needs to do to get into his squad.

‘We have been very impressed with [Ivan],’ Southgate said. ‘We were impressed with him at Brentford last year. We have watched him this season, so we know all about him. 

‘We weren’t looking to take an additional striker for this camp but he is definitely a player we are monitoring closely. 

‘I think he has had a really good start to his Premier League career – as Brentford have had.

‘We want a player who can firstly score goals,’ Southgate added. ‘Can they score goals at the highest level? 

‘Can they score goals in the big matches against the best teams and the best defences? That is going to determine, in the end, the top level of players.

The England manager named Ollie Watkins as the best pressing centre forward in the league

‘Toney is clearly a much greater threat in terms of his aerial presence and his ability to flick things on and attack crosses. 

‘That suits the way Brentford play – they play to those strengths. Ollie [Watkins] is probably the best pressing centre forward in the league, for example. But, in the end, it comes down to scoring goals.’

Tammy Abraham is another player whose name has been mentioned regarding a call-up.

Tammy Abraham has acclimatised well to life at Roma and is also in Southgate’s thoughts

The 23-year-old has four goals and two assists in nine games since joining Jose Mourinho’s Roma, who currently sit fourth in Serie A.

‘Tammy has started well. It’s quite early stages,’ Southgate said. ‘I have exchanged messages with Jose just to keep a track on that. He’s another player who we know has been with us before. 

‘We are probably only talking about six or seven English strikers, really, that are either playing in the Premier League or, as Tammy is, playing in one of the big European leagues. 

Southgate has revealed that he has exchanged messages with Jose Mourinho about the striker

‘So it’s not a huge pool to cover at the moment. We will keep monitoring those guys really closely.’

England are currently four points clear at the top of their World Cup qualifying group with four games to play and face Andorra in the capital Andorra la Vella on October 9 before hosting Hungary three days later. 

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