Ivan Toney hailed for ‘unique ability’ to shrug off pressure as penalty run continues amid ban fears
Thomas Frank believes Ivan Toney’s latest penalty exploits are proof of his “unique ability” to put aside the ongoing saga over an FA investigation into alleged betting breaches and continue delivering for Brentford.
Toney’s second-half penalty - his 22nd consecutive successful spot-kick since signing for the Bees - helped Frank’s side to a 3-2 victory over Fulham in Monday night’s west London derby at the Gtech Community Stadium.
The game was Toney’s first since he issued a public statement last week demanding a “leak inquiry”, following reports that he had admitted to some of the 262 breaches over which he was charged by the FA last year.
Disciplinary proceedings are set to start in the coming weeks, and if found guilty Toney could face a ban but the forward said he found it “disturbing” to read of speculation over the length of any punishment.
“He is the best penalty taker in the world for a few reasons, his strategy, he practices it and he is very cool,” Frank said. “He keeps doing it all the same.
“It is a unique skill with him, I think in general before this situation with the case going on before that unique ability to focus on games and training and he has kept doing that so that doesn't surprise me. He doesn't like the situation but he has top focus.
“He is a special footballer, I think his character is unique in terms of leadership and driving his team.
“His link-up play and the way he sees his team-mates around in terms of combinations and then his ability to score goals. He is an all-around football player.”