Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe go head-to-head for European Golden Shoe… but Italian veteran Fabio Quagliarella could beat them to award
- Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe top rankings in race for European Golden Shoe
- Sampdoria veteran Fabio Quagliarella is third in the rankings with 22 goals
- Messi has struck 33 times for Barcelona while Mbappe has 30 goals for PSG
Barcelona legend Lionel Messi and Paris Saint-Germain wonderkid Kylian Mbappe are the favourites to win the European Golden Shoe, but could be upstaged by 36-year-old Italian Fabio Quagliarella.
The award is calculate by multiplying a player’s domestic league goal tally by the difficulty ranking of the league, with the likes of Serie A, Premier League, Ligue 1 and La Liga all receiving a 2.0 ranking while the Eredivise is rated at 1.5.
Messi currently tops the leaderboard with 33 goals, giving him a score of 66, while Mbappe is three goals back on a rating of 60.
Italian veteran Fabio Quagliarella has scored 22 goals for Sampdoria in Serie A this season
RACE FOR EUROPEAN GOLDEN SHOE
Lionel Messi – 33 goals/66 points
Kylian Mbappe 30/60
Fabio Quagliarella 22/44
Mbaye Diagne 28/42
Luuk De Jong 28/42
Quagliarella is still in with a chance of beating both, having registered 22 league goals with his Sampdoria side still having five games to play in Serie A.
In Messi, Quagliarella is competing with a five-time winner of the award.
Juventus’ Ronaldo has claimed it four times, but this season has only 19 strikes for his new club. He would need to produce spectacular form to force his way into the mix now.
Beside those two, the only other winner since 2010 has been Luis Suarez, lifting it while at Liverpool in 2014 after 31 goals and then again in 2016 after 40 goals for Barcelona.
Lionel Messi (left) and Kylian Mbappe are currently top of the race for European Golden Shoe
Even if Messi is overhauled at the top of the rankings, his all-time Golden Shoe record of 50 goals during the 2011-12 campaign is almost certainly safe for another season.
Young Frenchman Mbappe has continued his meteoric rise this season after winning the World Cup last summer, and at 20 would be two years younger than Messi when he first won the award.
His PSG side – already crowned Ligue 1 champions – also have one more league game left to play than Barcelona, with Messi’s club also facing a Champions League semi-final tie against Liverpool.
Also in contention are Mbaye Diagne who joined Galatasary from Kasimpasa in January and has 28 goals this campaign but in leagues ranked 1.5, while in fifth place is PSV’s Luuk De Jong who has also hit 28 goals.