Cristiano catch up! Ronaldo needs at least FOUR goals in last two games to pip Robert Lewandowski and Ciro Immobile to European Golden Shoe award… so can the Juventus star find a goal glut to succeed Lionel Messi as the continent’s top scorer?
- The race for the European Golden Shoe looks set to go right down to the wire
- Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski leads the way with 34 league goals
- Lazio striker Ciro Immobile has the same number of goals as it stands
- But the Bundesliga season has finished while Serie A is almost at an end
- Cristiano Ronaldo sits in third but has a lot of ground to make up to win award
Cristiano Ronaldo’s list of personal accolades is as long as your arm and it suggests he really hates missing out on them.
But the Juventus star is playing catch up when it comes to this season’s European Golden Shoe award, presented to the continent’s leading goalscorer.
It’s a trophy he’s won four times previously, but Ronaldo now has it all to do to make it five.
Cristiano Ronaldo needs to score at least four goals in two games to win the Golden Shoe
Lazio’s Ciro Immobile is the favourite to win the award after his hat-trick against Hellas Verona
Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski was well ahead in the Golden Shoe race at one point
1. ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI*
Bayern Munich, 34 goals, 68 points
2. CIRO IMMOBILE
Lazio, 34 goals, 68 points
3. CRISTIANO RONALDO
Juventus, 31 goals, 62 points
4. TIMO WERNER*
RB Leipzig, 28 goals, 56 points
5. LIONEL MESSI*
Barcelona, 25 goals, 50 points
* League season finished
Lewandowski is currently ahead because he played fewer minutes.
That’s because Lazio striker Ciro Immobile has leapfrogged him on the leaderboard with his hat-trick in their 5-1 win at Hellas Verona on Sunday night.
It means the Italian is now in the box seat to catch Bayern Munich’s prolific Robert Lewandowski and take home the Golden Shoe.
The award counts league goals only and multiplies the goal tallies by a coefficient based on the relative strength of that league to its European counterparts.
In the case of Europe’s major leagues, that means multiplying by a factor of two.
So with Lewandowski and Immobile both registering 34 league goals for the season as it stands, they’re joint top on 68 points.
Ronaldo, meanwhile, finds himself in third with 31 goals and just 62 points with time running out to catch up.
Of course the advantage lies squarely with Immobile because Lewandowski’s Bundesliga season has finished already and so he can’t add to those 68 points.
But Lazio have two Serie A fixtures left to play – at home to Brescia on Wednesday and at Napoli on Sunday – and Immobile would need just one more goal to take the award.
That’s unless Ronaldo can conjure four or more goals in Juve’s two remaining matches away to Cagliari on Wednesday and at home to Roma on Sunday.
Barcelona star Lionel Messi won the Golden Shoe for the sixth time in the 2018-19 season
Ronaldo has been scoring goals prolifically since the restart but is still playing catch up
Should Lewandowski and Immobile remain level-pegging, the trophy is awarded based on the ratio of goals scored per minute played.
That favours the Bayern man because he played in 31 of their 34 Bundesliga games, while Immobile has played in 35 of Lazio’s 36 so far and will undoubtedly play in their final two matches.
But it’s only Immobile’s highly impressive scoring form since Serie A returned from lockdown that has made this into a contest.
Immobile scores a penalty on Sunday and now needs one more goal to move out in front
Lewandowski in training for Bayern’s Champions League return – but the league has finished
Lewandowski was seven goals ahead even when the Bundesliga season finished on June 27 but Immobile has scored precisely that amount since.
Ronaldo has scored 10 in 10 Serie A matches since the restart, hauling himself into contention and also ensuring Juventus won their ninth consecutive Scudetto.
What is for certain is that Lionel Messi’s three-year winning streak will be snapped.
Returns of 37, 34 and 36 goals respectively in the past three seasons for Barcelona have seen the Argentine take his personal tally to six Golden Shoes.
It’s little wonder Ronaldo will be desperate to finish the season with a goal glut.
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