Arsenal can seal clever £32m signing that would be bitter pill to swallow for Ivan Toney

Mikel Arteta could snub Ivan Toney and sign one of his Brentford team-mates instead (Image: GETTY)

Arsenal could secure a shrewd summer deal by snubbing Ivan Toney and bringing one of his Brentford team-mates to the Emirates Stadium instead. The Gunners have been linked with a move for Toney over the last two years, with the England striker widely expected to move on before the start of next season.

Toney has repeatedly stated his desire to join a top club in the near future and is about to enter the final year of his Brentford contract, which suggests that he could be sold this summer. However, it seems Arsenal could reap the benefits of overlooking Toney in favour of a move for Bryan Mbeumo.

Mbeumo is thought to be attracting interest from the likes of Liverpool and Newcastle United ahead of the upcoming summer window. He has emerged as one of Brentford’s most important players after making a seamless transition to the Premier League following their promotion from the Championship in 2021.

Bryan Mbeumo is thought to be attracting interest from the likes of Liverpool and Newcastle (Image: GETTY)

The Cameroon international is able to play out wide and through the middle, which would allow him to deputise for Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Martin Odegaard at Arsenal. The Gunners have been crying out for a new winger to allow Saka to be rested and Mbeumo could be the perfect fit, especially when his low transfer value is taken into account.

He is rated at just over £32million by Transfermarkt, potentially making him a bargain for Arsenal if the north Londoners decide to join the race for his signature. It remains unclear what Brentford would demand for him but the fee would almost certainly be less than Toney’s.

Mbeumo recently fuelled rumours that he could leave Brentford by admitting that being linked with top clubs was an ‘enticing’ prospect.

“I’ve spent five seasons at Brentford in a club that knew how to help me grow and take a step forward,” he told L’Equipe. “But yes, I want to play in the biggest competitions, in the best clubs. It’s still enticing to see some big teams interested in me. We’ll see.”

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A move to the Emirates Stadium for Mbeumo would undoubtedly be a bitter pill to swallow for Toney, who has made no secret of his interest in playing for Arsenal. Last year, he revealed his childhood admiration for the Gunners during a candid chat with Steven Bartlett on the Diary of a CEO podcast.

“If the chance came along, then I’d have to look more into it,” said Toney when asked for his thoughts on a future move away from Brentford. “The manager knows I want to play at the highest level possible, whenever that time comes then so be it.

“My time at Brentford has been good, probably one of the best times of my whole career. The next club I go to, if I was to move, would be the right club. I’ve been a Liverpool fan my whole life, but from young I’ve liked Arsenal.”