Ivan Toney will get final chance to impress England boss Gareth Southgate against Iceland

Ivan Toney will get final chance to impress England boss Gareth Southgate against Iceland

As Euro 2024 draws near, Brentford striker Ivan Toney finds himself at a pivotal crossroads.

With the tournament in Germany looming, the 28-year-old is desperate to secure his place in England’s squad for what would be his first major international competition. The urgency is palpable as opportunities to impress head coach Gareth Southgate are rapidly dwindling.

Toney’s omission from the pitch during England’s 3-0 victory over Bosnia & Herzegovina at St James’ Park on Monday night has only intensified the pressure. As the penultimate warm-up game before the Euros, the match was seen as a crucial opportunity for Toney to make his case. Instead, he remained a spectator on the bench, watching as his teammates showcased their skills and staked their claims for a spot in the final squad.

The clock is ticking for Toney, with just one warm-up match remaining against Iceland at Wembley on Friday.

Southgate has been clear about his priority: ensuring captain Harry Kane is in peak condition for England’s first group-stage match against Serbia in Gelsenkirchen on June 16. This focus on Kane, coupled with the limited remaining game time, means Toney’s window to prove himself is exceedingly narrow.

Brentford striker Ivan Toney with the England squad.

Gareth Southgate confirms Ivan Toney will play a part for England against Iceland

Despite the challenges, Southgate has confirmed that Toney will feature in the game against Iceland. “He [Toney] will be involved in the game on Friday,” Southgate stated to The Express, acknowledging the critical juncture for the Brentford striker.

For Toney, this could mean less than half a game to demonstrate his worthiness as Kane’s understudy: a role crucial for England’s depth and flexibility in the tournament.

Missing out on the Euros would be a devastating blow for Toney, who has battled adversity to reach this point. After serving an eight-month suspension for betting violations, which ended in January, he has been on a mission to prove his mettle and secure a spot in Southgate’s team. His determination and resilience have been evident, but the competitive nature of international football leaves no room for complacency.

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