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Arsenal Transfer News: Ivan Toney, Kai Havertz & Aaron Ramsdale – summer transfer plans made clear in Brentford win

Tom Weber

  • Updated: 9 Mar 2024 20:07 GMT
  • 4 min read
Kai Havertz, Gabriel Jesus, Ivan Toney, Arsenal

Arsenal’s last-gasp victory over Brentford not only kept their title hopes alive, it also clarified some of the Gunners’ summer plans.

Ahead of the match, most of the talk was about Ivan Toney. The wantaway Brentford striker had been heavily linked with a move to Emirates in recent months, but a fresh report asserted that interest from the north London club was growing cold.

The Bees’ visit was, therefore, billed as Toney’s final chance to impress Mikel Arteta and sporting director Edu that he is good enough to lead the line for an elite side. The 27-year-old, however, disappointed. Toney only mustered a single shot on target and his overall play left a lot to be desired, with the striker boasting a passing accuracy of just 30 per cent.

It’s not like Toney wasn’t involved in the game as you would maybe expect given the gulf in quality between Arsenal and Brentford. On the contrary, the striker had more touches than any other of the visitors’ outfield players. He just wasn’t very effective and FootballCritic gave him a rating of just 6.1. He will have done little to convince Arteta that he is a better option than younger strikers such as Viktor Gyokeres and Benjamin Sesko.

Ivan Toney
© IMAGO – Ivan Toney

Havertz stars, Ramsdale makes horror mistake

For most of the second half of the game, it seemed as though Aaron Ramsdale would cost Arsenal some vital points in the title race. The goalkeeper, deputising for David Raya as he was ineligible to face his parent club, made a massive howler right on the stroke of halftime, gifting Brentford an equaliser that had not really been coming.

Though he somewhat redeemed himself with some good saves in the second period, his lapse of concentration likely ended his Gunners career for good. He won’t be starting in the future – unless Raya gets injured – and will surely depart the club to become a number one elsewhere.

The man who saved Ramsdale’s skin was Kai Havertz. His late header finally saw the Gunners breach Brentford’s stout backline. After some early struggles following his €75 million move from Chelsea, the German is now regularly proving his worth to Arsenal.

Kai Havertz
© IMAGO – Kai Havertz

Mikel Arteta has put his faith in the 24-year-old and he is handsomely rewarding his coach. Havertz has now notched four goals and two assists in his last four Premier League outings, playing the majority of the available minutes in each game.

His form and Arsenal’s recent flurry of goals could yet prompt a transfer rethink. Do they really need to break the bank on a prolific number nine in the summer? Or should they prioritise the signing of defenders and midfielders instead?

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