Bet on the World Cup 2018 Top Goalscorer – Check the Latest Odds & Our Prediction
There are very few individual awards that are more prestigious than the Golden Boot on a World Cup. Scoring the most goals in that tournament is something most strikers only can dream of. Names like Ronaldo (Fenomeno), Davor Suker, Gary Lineker and Gerd Muller are only a few of the legends who won the award in the past. It’s precisely Muller and Ronaldo that lead the sheet with most scored goals in a single tournament for the last 50 years – 10 for Muller and 8 for Ronaldo.
Betting on the goalscorer on any football competition can be quite tricky. Big names, like Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar are always in the top 3 contenders, but reputation is not always enough. Take for example James Rodriguez who won the Golden Boot four years ago – he was only 22 years old back then, he isn’t a striker, but even so, he won the award when he scored 6 goals in 5 matches.
Without further ado, let’s check who are the main Golden Boot contenders and what are their chances according to leading bookmakers.
Odds for the Major Contenders for the Top Goalscorer Award
When it comes to scoring on big football events, there are two names that always pop up – Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. The two of them have been reigning as global superstars more than 10 years and the World Cup 2018 in Russia will be their last chance to win the only individual award they don’t possess yet.
Neymar is also a player who can score a lot and was in a fantastic form before the injury which kept him away from the fields more than two months.
Other possible winners who fill up our Top 5 are Antoine Griezmann and Gabriel Jesus – they have brilliant squads behind them and superb playmakers who can distribute the ball very well and precise.
Check our in-debt profile of each of the 5 major Golden Boot contenders below.
Lionel Messi, just like the last 8 years, is one of the major contenders for scoring the most goals on the World Cup finals. If he is going to succeed depends on two major factors.
The first one is whether the opponents will let him dribble with the ball enough so he can create his own goals opportunities. If defenders put their efforts in guarding him, then either Higuain or Aguero will have more clear shots and probably Messi will try to pass more to his teammates, letting his desire for individual awards behind the good for the team.
The second major factor is how far will Argentina come in this World Cup. Last time they reached the finals and even then Messi didn’t win the Golden Boot. We will have to wait and see. For now, the odds for Messi to become the Top Goalscorer are 10 at Ladbrokes.
Cristiano Ronaldo is always among the main contenders when it comes to scoring awards and it couldn’t be any other way since he became the top goalscorer in the Champions League again. His odds for winning the Golden Boot are not as good as those of Messi – 15 @Betway but even so, he is a trait to be reckon in the penalty area.
The main obstacle for Ronaldo is going to be the performance of his team, because nobody thinks Portugal will go far in the competition. That means he will have to score as much as possible goals in the Group Stage and eventually in the Round of 16.
Another question mark is whether his coach will give him the freedom he gets in Real Madrid so that he can save his stamina only in the attacking phase of the game. After all, he is 33 years old and had a very tough season with his club, winning the Champions League for a third time in a roll.
Neymar is the captain of the Brazilian national team and is the leading force in attack. He is one of the most gifted players the world has ever seen and is definitely going to tear defenences apart.
Neymar suffered an injury and was recovering for 2 months, playing only 2 games for PSG before joining the Brazilian squad. This is going to be the biggest question regarding the Brazilian team – whether he will be 100% fit and ready to lead his teammates. As we all know, when Neymar is on top of his game, he is the closest thing that comes to Messi and Ronaldo and it comes to no one’s surprise that his odds to become the top goalscorer are 11 @William Hill. That also means that Neymar has the second best chance to win the Golden Boot – behind only to Messi with odds from 10.
France are among the favourites of Winning the World Cup and it comes to no surprise that their best striker is considered to win the Golden Boot. Griezmann didn’t have his best season in Atletico Madrid, but even so, he has shown his scoring abilities hundreds of times.
There are two main factors for the good chances of Griezmann to win the top goalscorer award – his team is considered to reach the final, which means he will have a lot of games he can score in, and the fact that he has world class midfielders behind him who can create goal opportunities.
Griezmann’s odds for scoring the most goals in the 2018 World Cup are estimated at 13 @Betway which are slightly better than those of Cristiano Ronaldo. Griezmann also scored 6 goals in 7 games on the last Euro Cup, when France lost to Portugal in the final. He also had a decent performance during the World Cup Qualifiers, so it is no wonder that he is considered one of the best choices to bet on when it comes to scoring.
Gabriel Jesus will have the hard task to compete with his teammate Neymar for the Golden Boot award. He had a decent season for Manchester City scoring 13 goals in 29 games in the Premier League and did a fantastic job replacing Sergio Aguero when he was injured. Gabriel Jesus suffered an injury, too, but he came back at time and is in a deadly form, possessing a constant threat to opponents’ goalkeepers.
Gabriel Jesus odds for winning the Top Goalscorer award at the World Cup are 17 @Bet365. These are not the best chances but it is understanding since one of his competitors is his teammate Neymar. An advantage for Jesus might be the fact that he is a typical striker while Neymar might have not so attacking role trying to set chances for his teammates instead of playing as a second striker. Even so, all the spotlights will be focused on Neymar so it will depend mostly on him whether he will be in the race for the Golden Boot.
The top contenders for the World Cup Goalscorer Award are mainly from the teams that are considered of winning the trophy. There are, however, world-class players who, most probably, will not be able to win the tournament but still can win the Golden Boot.
A great example is Harry Kane who is one of the best strikers in the last couple of years. His odds for becoming the top goalscorer are 17 at William Hill.
Another player who might win the award is Timo Werner. The fact that most bookies consider Germany as a team which can reach at least the Semi Finals, makes the German striker’s chances of scoring a lot of goals very tempting. Timo Werner’s odds for winning the Golden Boot are 15 @Ladbrokes.
The last honorable mention is Romelu Lukaku. His odds for winning the goalscorer award are 19 @Bet365. Lukaku had a successful season in Manchester United and Belgium are a team which can definitely reach the Quarter or Semi Finals, so he will have enough matches in which he can score.
How to Make the Right Choice?
Betting on the Top Goalscorer market on the World Cup is very difficult because there are a lot of variables to be considered.
First, and most important, is…
…how strong the team is and what phase it is considered to reach in the tournament. That is why players like Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner are among the main contenders for winning the Golden Boot. With more games played, each player has a bigger chance of scoring which makes even not so classy footballers, but typical scorers, a contender for the Goalscorer Award. Basically, these are decent strikers, who must rely on their teammates to create opportunities for them which they can transform into goals. Another thing that must be kept in mind is the quality of the players behind them. For example, Lukaku has De Bruyne and Hazard behind him, while Werner can expect assists from Mesut Ozil and Toni Kroos.
A second very important criteria is…
…the pure class of a player and his role in the squad. In this situation, we have names like Messi, Ronaldo and Neymar. Those are arguably the best 3 footballers right now, who have it all when it comes to skills. They are among the best when it comes to dribbling, shooting, mentality, and goalscoring. They are also the leaders and captains of their respective teams which means they will execute all free kicks and penalties. That makes their chances of scoring higher since they will have more opportunities than their teammates.
This is the main reason while world-class strikers like Higuain and Aguero are so behind in the predictions – it is supposed that Messi will have a lot more chances in front of the goal than them. The same is the situation with Gabriel Jesus, who, despite being a great striker, will have to depend on the team’s strategy, which might not be in his favour. Of course, if Neymar will be more occupied with creating opportunities than utilizing them, then Jesus might have chances of winning the top goalscorer award.
Last but least comes…
… a factor that can ruin the whole competition for a team and not only the run for the Golden Boot – injuries. It is very important for a bettor to be familiar with everything regarding the physical conditions of the player he wants to bet on. Let’s take Neymar for example: he got injured in the game against Marseille, just before the second Champions League clash against Real Madrid and was out for 3 months, missing the final weeks of the season for PSG before joining the Brazilian camp for the World Cup. This means that he is still not 100% ready and that can affect his game in the beginning of the tournament.
The bad news, however, for all those of you who consider placing a bet for Neymar to win the Golden Boot is that he will not be physically capable of playing like he could in games that will be more opened and where his chance of scoring will be higher.
Our View and Prediction
As we said before, betting on the Top Goalscorer at the World Cup is not easy. But, if you have made your researchers and watch football regularly, then this type of market can be successful for you.
Our view is that you have two possible ways when picking the Golden Boot winner.
The first one is…
…to play it safe and bet on established names like Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo or Neymar. They are the best players right now and their goal scoring abilities are unrivaled. Even more, both Argentina and Brazil are considered to make it all the way to the Semi Finals, while Portugal and especially Ronaldo will have a lot of work if they want to pass through the Round of 16. This type of analysis makes Neymar and Messi a very attractive option for bettors who don’t want to risk a lot.
The second option here is…
… to bet not so much on a player but rather on a team that will have a successful campaign. If you do so, you can pick the striker of the team who you think will have enough goal scoring opportunities. If you do so, you can place a bet on Timo Werner or Romelu Lukaku. Germany and Belgium have brilliant players in the midfield which is a premise for a lot of goal opportunities.
The third betting strategy you can use is…
… to bet on a so-called Dark Horse. A name that almost no one mentions in the Top Goalscorer predictions is Diego Costa. He is an established striker who has shown countless times what he is capable of. Spain also have an experienced squad with a lot of young talented players and are considered being capable of reaching the Semi Finals. That will give Costa a lot of chances to score, if he is picked in the starting eleven by Julen Lopetegui.
Another player who has tempting odds is Harry Kane who is in a fantastic form for his club Tottenham Hotspur and could definitely bring his scoring abilities to the stadiums in Russia. He is going to be the main choice in the attack of England, so betting on him makes sense if you trust that the 2018 World Cup is going to be the tournament in which England will show their true face.
After everything said, let us tell you our favourite for the Golden Boot award. It is quite hard to pick only one name when we have to choose from world class players, but if we have to go with a single prediction, that is going to be Neymar. He is the captain and leader of Brazil, who have an outstanding team and is going to be the player who will execute all penalties and free kicks. Furthermore, Brazil are among the favourites for winning the World Cup which will give Neymar plenty of games in which he can show his talent. His odds are 11 at bet365, so if you trust our prediction you can place your bet right away.
Read more about World Cup 2018:
- World Cup 2018 – Bet on the Winner
- World Cup 2018 – groups, venues, schedule & favourites
- World Cup 2018 group stage predictions & analysis