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Mikel Arteta’s number one target says he will not leave current club in January

The one player Mikel Arteta really wanted to sign this January has revealed that he is going to stay at current club.

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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta v Fulham
Image Credit: Getty Images

Arsenal primary target, Ivan Toney, has dismissed the possibility of an exit this January, expressing his commitment to stay with Brentford as he prepares for his Premier League comeback after a lengthy ban for breaching gambling regulations.

The 27-year-old English striker, absent from the game since May due to an eight-month ban resulting from 232 breaches of FA betting rules, is poised for his Premier League return against Nottingham Forest on January 20.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Toney reflected on his ban and the struggles to maintain his passion for football during this period. The ban led Toney to detach himself from watching football matches, confronting a period where he felt alienated from the sport he loved.

“I lost my enthusiasm for football for a while. I distanced myself from the game, almost as a form of self-punishment.

“There was a time I fell out of touch with football. It was tough missing games and being away from my teammates. But dwelling on it won’t change the situation.”

READ MORE: Mikel Arteta responds to Ian Wright’s comments on Liverpool defeat.

Despite reported interest from clubs like Arsenal and Chelsea, Toney emphasises his gratitude and loyalty to Brentford, particularly to his manager Thomas Frank and the club as a whole, for their unwavering support during his absence.

Ivan Toney

Ivan Toney says he wants to help Brentford this season when he is back from suspension (Image credit: Getty Images)

“Thomas Frank and the club have been incredibly supportive. They’ve organized additional training sessions for me, going the extra mile even in adverse weather conditions,” Toney praised. “I owe them a lot, and I’m eager to repay their faith in me.”

He also expressed his appreciation for the fans, citing their continuous support, even during his absence.

“The fans have been fantastic. They chanted my name even when I wasn’t playing. Their unwavering support means a lot to me,” Toney acknowledged.

Looking ahead, Toney aims to contribute significantly to Brentford’s efforts to improve their current form upon his return.

“I’m eager to assist my teammates and play a pivotal role in helping Brentford break their recent losing streak,” he affirmed. “I’m looking forward to returning and making a positive impact.”

NEXT ARTICLE: What Josh Kroenke did after the defeat to Liverpool in the FA Cup.

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