Ivan Toney made a spectacular return from his eight-month suspension, scoring a crucial goal to lead Brentford to a thrilling 3-2 victory against Nottingham Forest.
Toney, who had been banned since May for violating betting rules, marked his comeback by donning the captain’s armband and finding the net for the first time in 267 days.
Forest took an early lead, with Danilo capitalizing on defensive errors to put them ahead. However, Toney quickly restored parity in the 19th minute with an audacious free-kick, showcasing his prowess and determination.
Ben Mee’s headed goal gave Brentford the lead, but Chris Wood equalized for Forest before Toney’s strike partner Neal Maupay secured the win for the Bees.
The atmosphere around the stadium reflected the significance of Toney’s return, with digital billboards celebrating his comeback.
Despite Forest’s early lead, Toney’s exquisite free-kick, reminiscent of his pre-ban form, ignited joy among the fans. The Bees had opportunities to take the lead before half-time, with Keane Lewis-Potter hitting the crossbar.
Brentford’s relentless pressure paid off in the 58th minute when Mee headed home a corner from Mathias Jensen. Forest responded as Wood scored his fifth goal in four league matches under manager Nuno Espirito Santo.
Nevertheless, Toney played a crucial role in the victory, orchestrating the play for Maupay’s decisive goal in the 70th minute.
The win brought relief to Brentford, ending a streak of five successive Premier League defeats. Toney’s impressive comeback showcased his resilience and goal-scoring prowess, providing a much-needed boost for the Bees.