Striker fails in England Euros audition as Gareth Southgate watches Newcastle smash Brentford

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Ivan Toney and Callum Wilson could be battling it out for a place in Gareth Southgate’s Euros squad.

Gareth Southgate watched Newcastle demolish Brentford in a goal fest ahead of making his final calls for England’s Euros squad.

The Three Lions coach will announce his preliminary training group on Tuesday (21 May). He will then have more than two weeks to run the rule over the players at St George’s Park, before revealing his final 26-man squad on 7 June.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

On the final day of the Premier League season, the Three Lions boss visited the G-Tech Community Stadium to watch Brentford take on Newcastle. Surely one of Southgate’s final big decisions is whether to take Ivan Toney or Callum Wilson as the third striker after Harry Kane and Ollie Watkins.

Both players have missed large parts of season - the Newcastle number nine through injury and Brentford’s hitman via suspension. Neither striker has made strong case for their inclusion on the flight to Germany in recent games.

England manager Gareth Southgate at Brentford v Newcastle. Credit: GettyEngland manager Gareth Southgate at Brentford v Newcastle. Credit: Getty
England manager Gareth Southgate at Brentford v Newcastle. Credit: Getty | Getty Images

Toney hasn’t scored in the Premier League since February, while Wilson has only played three games in that time - scoring twice. The Brentford man looked to be ahead in the pecking order as he started the game, with Wilson on the bench.

Toney looked to have made the most of Southgate’s presence, rolling the ball into the net against his former club after two minutes. However the goal was ruled out by the video assistant referee due to an offside in the build up. That was as good as it got for Toney for the rest of the game. Newcastle fired in three quick-fire goals in the first half.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Eddie Howe’s men are chasing Europe, and will get a Conference League spot if Manchester City beat Manchester United in the FA Cup final. While the Bees had safety confirmed several games ago.

Getty Images

Toney was lucky to stay on the pitch for a challenge on Bruno Guimaraes towards the end of the first half. He smashed through the Newcastle talisman’s ankle after the ball had gone, but was only given a yellow.

Toney looks likely to leave west London this summer, with West Ham, Arsenal and Tottenham all linked to the Bees hitman. One Brentford fan made his feelings known at half-time, calling the striker a “fraud”.

The home side came out firing in the second half, with Vitaly Janelt slotting in a Yoane Wissa cross four minutes after the restart. Brentford then looked to make a game of it, as Wissa curled in a beauty with 68 minutes gone. Toney however played no part in either goal, and cut a frustrated figure.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Newcastle thought they had a penalty, when Lewis Hall sashayed through the Brentford defence and was clipped by Bryan Mbeumo. However the VAR deemed it was outside the box. Mark Flekken could only parry Alexander Isak’s resulting free kick and man of the match Bruno tucked the ball away.

Wilson got his chance to audition for the Three Lions boss with 10 minutes to go. However he was largely camped in his own half as Newcastle repelled some late Brentford pressure. Toney’s game only got worse, and his final action was to slash a free kick high and wide of Nick Pope’s goal.

After the game, Thomas Frank said Toney should “100%” be in Southgate’s squad. “I’m biased OK so I think he should be in the squad,” he told reporters. “The most important thing going into that squad is being physically fit,” Frank said, adding that Toney is fully recovered from his injury.

Thomas Frank addressed Brentford fans after defeat to Newcaslte United.Thomas Frank addressed Brentford fans after defeat to Newcaslte United.
Thomas Frank addressed Brentford fans after defeat to Newcaslte United. | Getty Images

The Brentford manager said that Southgate could throw Toney into a quarter final or semi final, saying “he is the man for the big occasion”. Frank described Toney as the “best penalty taker in the world”, joking with reporters that “England has a thing about penalties”.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Addressing some of the transfer speculation, he added: “I would like to keep him, there are a lot of rumours. I don’t know who creates all these rumours ... for now Ivan [Toney] is a Brentford player.”

Speaking about the match, Frank said: “I think he [Toney] actually played a very good game. I know he was beating himself up for the big chance in the first half.”

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.