The 26-year-old gave his hopes of being part of England’s World Cup squad a significant boost with an excellent all-round performance, topped off with two goals taking his tally to 55 in 100 appearances in all competitions for Brentford.
Brighton’s players warmed up in T-shirts dedicated to Zambian team-mate Enock Mwepu, whose career ended abruptly this week after he was diagnosed with a hereditary heart condition.
The visitors came close to taking a lead through Moises Caicedo in the 20th minute, but goalkeeper David Raya tipped his pile driver over the crossbar in the 20th minute and he made another clever save from Joel Veltman from the resulting corner.
Bryan Mbeumo then hit the bar with a volley for Brentford just before Toney opened the score with a stroke that may have been less spectacular but still exuded class.
The home side broke forward and Frank Onyeka pulled the ball over the penalty area so that Toney shot defender Adam Webster’s legs into the net with a daring heel.
As the visitors struggled to deal with Brentford on set pieces, Toney won a penalty 62 minutes into the game when defender Joel Veltman bundled him into the penalty area.
Brighton had plenty of possession in the closing stages but couldn’t get the ball past Raya as the home side held on to the win and lift them to eighth in the standings by 13 points, one behind Brighton, seventh.
“I love playing with these guys, we’ve put together a great squad, everyone, we’ve worked hard from the ball and that’s what Brentford is all about,” goalscorer Toney told Sky Sports.
The striker was part of the England squad that faced Germany and Italy during the recent international match, and although he was denied playing time, his confidence is still high.
“I feel good, I feel ready to go. Obviously everyone is talking about England, it’s a shame not to go on but I will keep going and I will keep working hard,” said Toney.
If he continues to score goals like he did against Brighton, he will be hard to ignore.