Ivan Toney made the claim after playing his part in Brentford’s win over Arsenal on the opening weekend of the season, but the Gunners have to fight to prove him wrong.
Brentford got the better of Arsenal on the opening weekend of the season, and striker Ivan Toney took aim at the north London side after playing his part in the 2-0 win.
Former Northampton Town striker Toney led the line as goals from Sergi Canos and Christian Norgaard handed the Bees victory – one of three defeats Mikel Arteta’s side would suffer in their first three games of the season.
Things changed ahead of the teams’ reverse game, with Arsenal issuing a top-four challenge and Thomas Frank’s men not yet safe from relegation.
However, with the Gunners already absent from both domestic cups, Toney’s trophy comments – which he feared would get him ‘beaten’ by fans of Arteta’s side – have so far come to fruition. righteous.
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There were of course mitigating factors in Arsenal’s defeat in August.
The match at Brentford Community Stadium went ahead despite a Covid outbreak in the Gunners squad, with Alexandre Lacazette and the now deceased Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang absent.
The situation saw Folarin Balogun start a Premier League game for the first time, while Willian and Alex Runarsson – who are both now playing their football elsewhere – also missed the trip to west London after positive tests.
“Arsenal fans are going to beat me for this, but you see Arsenal right now and they’re not the best,” Toney said. Baller talk in an interview posted online in September.
“There was a difference [between the Championship and the Premier League], do not mistake yourself. But it wasn’t crazy, thinking that if you make a mistake, it’s going to end up in the bottom of the net.
“I just didn’t see them as they were. You used to watch Arsenal and think [they were] crazy and they were going to win this game, win this game.
“These days I don’t see them winning anytime soon until they get a striker.”
Arsenal have since swelled their ranks, but not ahead.
Aaron Ramsdale and Martin Odegaard arrived shortly after the Brentford defeat, with Takehiro Tomiyasu also before the end of the summer transfer window, but January’s only signing – Auston Trusty – was immediately sent out on loan.
In attack, Arteta’s side find themselves with Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah, Aubameyang joining Barcelona and Balogun on loan at Middlesbrough.
Efforts were made to bring in a new striker in January, with Dusan Vlahovic among those pursued, but in the end Arsenal were left empty.
While Arsenal won the FA Cup in Arteta’s first season at the helm, they didn’t seem particularly close to adding to that trophy.
Southampton and Manchester City knocked the Gunners out of both domestic cups last season as they failed to score from open play in two legs of their Europa League semi-final against Villarreal.
League form has certainly improved this season, with a top-four finish still within reach, but Liverpool got the better of Arsenal in the Carabao Cup semi-finals and second-tier Nottingham Forest got them. eliminated from the FA Cup in the third round.
“They won, they scored a goal and we didn’t. We weren’t good enough and we have to apologize for that,” Arteta said after the loss to Forest in January.
“I don’t want to use excuses, I expect the team I form to do better and when you’re not in the cup you’re out.
“Today showed that we weren’t capable of winning against Forest away and that we didn’t level up to win the game. It’s a collective problem and today we didn’t. we didn’t do.”