Ivan Toney was given disappointing news during the week, but responded in the best way possible for Brentford on Saturday.
The striker was left out of England’s squad for the World Cup in Qatar, a surprising omission given his form for the Bees in recent months.
However, Toney was soon able to show Gareth Southgate what he could be missing in the coming weeks as he scored twice in Brentford’s shock 2-1 win over Manchester City.
The forward netted the opener for the visitors at the Etihad Stadium before Phil Foden equalised on the stroke of half-time.
City battled hard in the second-half to try and find themselves a crucial second, but Toney was able to score deep into stoppage-time to take all three points back to west London.
After the smash and grab victory, the striker spoke on the recent decision made by the England manager, insisting he will continue to work hard for his club.
“The only thing is just to keep doing well, keep doing my best, keep doing well for the team and who knows what could happen,” he told BT Sport.
“Obviously there’s disappointment, but I know what I’m capable of and I won’t let it put me down, I just keep going and keep doing well for Brentford.
Floyd Mayweather vs Deji LIVE: Money returns to ring against KSI’s brother
Wolves 0-2 Arsenal LIVE REACTION: Gunners move five points clear at top of table
Everton fans throw shirt back at players as police and stewards keep them apart
‘Our captain’ – Cooper wears noise cancelling headphones as he walks out with mascot
James comments on Toney Instagram post after striker answers England snub with brace
Wayne Rooney brands Ronaldo’s behaviour as ‘not acceptable’ at Man United
“My motivation is the boys in the dressing room and the fans. When we work hard, this is what we can do.”
Teammate Ben Mee had high praise for the star following the full-time whistle, after he came back from his mid-week disappointment to lead Brentford to a huge victory.
“He showed today what he’s about,” said the centre-back.
“Great quality, great battling skills, great hold up play and he can finish. He was fantastic today and fully deserved his two goals. I thought he could have had three or four!”
Toney’s goals were his ninth and tenth in the Premier League so far this season, which ranks him as the third highest scorer in the league behind Erling Haaland and Harry Kane.
He also now has 18 Premier League goals in 2022 – Harry Kane is the only English player with more this year.
Instead of Toney, Newcastle United’s Callum Wilson and Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford were the two strikers picked by Southgate to deputise for Three Lions skipper Kane.
Only time will tell if England will struggle without the prolific Brentford frontman, but Toney will be keen to continue his goal scoring form in the hopes of representing his country once again in the future.
Watch the World Cup with talkSPORT
At talkSPORT we are powered by fans, so come and join us for the ultimate World Cup fan experience this winter – at the talkSPORT Fan Zone.
In a huge indoor venue under the arches at Waterloo in London, we’ll bring you live screenings of every World Cup game.
There will be Q&As with talkSPORT talent, you’ll be part of our live broadcasts, and there will be plenty of food and drink on offer too.
Come and enjoy the best World Cup fan experience in London – and enjoy a pint on us – with tickets for England and Wales’ group stage games on sale now HERE!