The Champions League is halfway through the group stage which leaves plenty of value for punters looking to invest in the Golden Boot market. Currently Edin Dzeko (AS Roma) and Lionel Messi (Barcelona) are leading the way with 5 goals each, just ahead of Paulo Dybala on 4 (Juventus) and Neymar on 3 (PSG). Of course there are no prizes for the top scorer at the end of the group stage and with that in mind punters will need to find a player who is not only scoring but in a team that will make a deep run into the elimination stages.
Cristiano Ronaldo has won the last 6 Champions League Golden Boots with between 10-17 goals per campaign. The superstar striker has significantly increased the amount of goals required to win the award with the average goals only 8.5 between 1991-92 and 2010-11.
The Wolf takes a look at the players competing for the Champions League Golden Boot.
|SEASON/TIME (AEST)||BEST BETS|
|Champions League Top Scorer Market||Lionel Messi ($2.25)|
LIONEL MESSI (BARCELONA) ($2.25)
Messi casts an early spell over the Champions League
As punters can see, the Blaugrana striker absolutely dominates this market with PSG striker (and former teammate) Neymar the next favourite at $9.00. So why is Messi at such short odds this season with Cristiano Ronaldo still playing in the Champions League? For one Barcelona are playing wonderful, fluid football this season both in La Liga and Europe. Suarez, Roberto, Alba, Rakitic and Coutinho are all playing well which takes the pressure off Messi. Already 7 points ahead of Real Madrid in La Liga, this will take the pressure off Barcelona in the long term and that should enable a strong run in the Champions League.
The Wolf finds it hard to go past Messi in his current form.
SERGIO AGUERO (MANCHESTER CITY) ($13.00)
The Citizens eye off Europe’s biggest prize
Once again the Citizens are dominating the English Premier League and sit on top of Group F with 6 points from their opening 3 games. Despite a shock 1-2 opening loss at home to Lyon the Wolf expects them to progress easily. The Wolf worries that the Citizens will bottle it again. Last season they were wiped by Liverpool and knocked out of the FA Cup by Wigan all in the space of a few weeks. The quadruple became the double and that was that. Aguero needs to play at least until the semi-final to challenge for this award.
EDIN DZEKO (AS ROMA) ($15.00)
AS Roma’s star striker scoring for fun
The main concern for Dzeko winning the award will be how far AS Roma go in the Champions League. They should progress quite easily out of Group G, currently sitting second although equal on points with defending champions Real Madrid. CSKA Moscow are the big challengers on 4 points whilst Viktoria Plzen are the whipping boys of the group with just a single point from their first 3 games. In fact based on the current form of Los Blancos if they can’t get their act together, Roma may end up qualifying on top.
CRISTIANO RONALDO (JUVENTUS) ($15.00)
Seven in a row for CR7?
It’s strange for the winner of the last six Champions League Golden Boots to pay $15.00 to win another one. Ronaldo is still playing for a top contender and has shown no signs of slowing down in the Serie A where he has 7 goals and 4 assists.
CR7 is yet to score in the Champions League and was sent off after just 30 minutes in his first match against Valencia meaning he missed the second match against Swiss side Young Boys. Unable to find the back of the net against his old team Manchester United at Old Trafford means Ronaldo is already 5 goals behind the leaders of the pack which are showing no signs of slowing down.
BEST BETS: Lionel Messi ($2.25)