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Kane’s Brace Puts Him in Early Contention for Golden Boot

Harry Kane played hero for England on Monday in the World Cup, scoring both of the goals for the Three Lions in a 2-1 win against Tunisia, and he’s now +500 at Bovada to take home the Golden Boot, a trophy he’s won two of the past three seasons in the English Premier League.

Not only did captain Kane score, he did so in dramatic fashion, burying the winning goal in the first minute of injury time after an incredibly tepid half of football from the England 11.

That could be a common theme from here on with other England forwards like Jesse Lingard and Raheem Sterling looking like they forgot their scoring boots and 5/1 might be the best value you get on Kane for the rest of the tournament.

Lukaku Bags a Brace of his Own

Not to be forgotten is another Premier League striker, Romelu Lukaku. Manchester United’s starting No. 9 netted a pair for Belgium in a 3-0 win over Panama and now trails only Kane and Ronaldo in the odds to be top goalscorer at +600.

The Red Devils could make a run if manager Roberto Martinez figures out the tactics and while his target man didn’t receive much service in the first half against the Panamanians, the second 45 was another story. Lukaku scored off a brilliant side-footed slanted cross from Kevin De Bruyne and finished a lovely little chip for his brace.

If their play against England was any indication, Tunisia is ripe for conceding in Matchday 2 when they face Belgium and it would not be shocking to see Lukaku bend the twine on multiple occasions.

For the full list of updated Golden Boot odds, head over to Bovada and click the World Cup Futures tab. 

2018 World Cup Top Goalscorer Odds
PlayerCountryOdds
Cristiano RonaldoPortugal+225
Harry KaneEngland+500
Romelu LukakuBelgium+600
Diego Costa Spain+700
Antoine GriezmannFrance+1200
NeymarBrazil+1600
Sergio AgueroArgentina+2000
Lionel MessiArgentina+2000
Philippe CoutinhoBrazil+2500
Gabriel JesusBrazil+2500
Timo WernerGermany+3300
Robert LewandowskiPoland+3300
Edinson CavaniUruguay+4000
Kylian MbappeFrance+4000
Luis SuarezUruguay+4000
Dries MertensBelgium+4000
Hirving LozanoMexico+5000
Denis CheryshevRussia+5000
Thomas MullerGermany+5000

Odds as of June 18 at Bovada

Bet on the 2018 World Cup here

Archived Articles

In what will go down as one of the greatest group stage matches in World Cup history, Cristiano Ronaldo bagged a hat trick in a 3-3 draw vs Iberian rival Spain and he’s now the +200 favorite to be the tournament’s top goalscorer. 

Portugal’s breadwinner entered the 2018 World Cup with +1600 odds to win the Golden Boot at Bovada but with three already after the first game, Ronaldo is already halfway to James Rodriguez’ 2014 total.

Will Ronaldo Win Golden Boot Now?

By no means has CR7 secured the award with Diego Costa hot on his heels and some of the world’s best scorers yet to play but three is an awfully good start with Morocco and Iran still to come in the group.

You’ve lost a ton of value at this point but 2/1 still seems like a decent shout for a team that could go deep in Russia.

Where is the Value in Top Goalscorer Odds?

It’s still early days in the 2018 World Cup and many players have yet to see the pitch. That means there’s still plenty of value on the top goalscorer oddsboard. 

Neymar at +900 is still a great bet – if he’s healthy. The Brazilian star looked brilliant in the Canarinhowarm-up friendlies and he’s in the prime of his career. This could be Neymar’s tournament if he’s up for it and at 9/1 it could be yours too.

Falling inexplicably to +4000, Thomas Muller deserves some love. All the man has done in a German kit is score goals and there’s no reason to think he won’t do the same in Russia. 

He has already played but Edinson Cavani is worth a punt at +4000. The Uruguayan was unbelievably good against Egypt and he was unfortunate not to score multiple times. Robbed by the keeper on one occasion and blasting the post on another, Cavani nearly had two worldies to his name but with a match against Saudi Arabia still to come, he still has time for redemption.

Head over to Bovada and click the World Cup Futures tab for the entire list. 

2018 World Cup Top Goalscorer Odds
PlayerCountryOdds
Cristiano RonaldoPortugal+200
Diego Costa Spain+600
NeymarBrazil+900
Antoine GriezmannFrance+1100
Sergio AgueroArgentina+1600
Lionel MessiArgentina+1600
Gabriel JesusBrazil+1600
Harry KaneEngland+1600
Timo WernerGermany+1800
Romelu LukakuBelgium+2000
Robert LewandowskiPoland+3300
Denis CheryshevRussia+4000
Edinson CavaniUruguay+4000
Kylian MbappeFrance+4000
Luis SuarezUruguay+4000
Thomas MullerGermany+4000
Eden HazardBelgium+5000
Mohamed SalahEgypt+5000
Olivier GiroudFrance+5000

Odds as of June 16 at Bovada

Bet on the 2018 World Cup here

Archived Articles

We are now less than a week out from the kickoff of the 2018 World Cup in Russia and with 23-man squads locked down, we have a much firmer grasp on who will be doing the goal scoring this summer and we can narrow our sights on who we want to bet on to be the tournament’s top goalscorer.

Let’s take a look at the most important odds changes at Bovada since our last update.

Messi and Neymar Drop to +1000

This is nothing to be concerned about if you’ve already backed either of these prolific South Americans. It is, however, an opportunity to grab the favorites at a better price if you are so inclined. It is very likely that both men find the back of the net early and often at the World Cup and at 10/1 you’re not getting ripped off. 

In my opinion, though, Neymar is the better bet. Given some internal struggles and horrible play on the pitch, Argentina is not a team I’m clamoring to bet on at this tournament. If they go out early or fail to make it to the knockout round, Messi Golden Boot futures will be all but sunk.

Neymar, however, is in the prime of his career and Brazil is on the precipice of something special in Russia and is actually favored to win the tournament. 

Ronaldo’s Odds are Slipping

Dropping from +1200 to +1600 in the odds to win the Golden Boot at the World Cup, Cristiano Ronaldo is shaping up as one of the best bets on the board. CR7 nearly set a record for goal scoring in World Cup qualifying and his team is built for tournament success.

Portugal is all but a lock to get to the knockout round so a lack of minutes shouldn’t be a problem for the Navigators talisman. 

Lukaku is on the Rise

The Belgian Best, Romelu Lukaku, might be more primed for a big World Cup than any other goalscorer and his move from +2000 to +1800 makes a lot of sense and potentially a lot of dollars. He is absolutely surrounded by world-class setup men with the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Dries Mertens in Belgium’s attacking ranks so supply should not be an issue for Manchester United’s goal poacher.

For more Golden Boot talk, check out episode 2 of the OddsShark FC podcast.

Here’s the complete Golden Boot oddsboard:

2018 World Cup Top Goalscorer Odds
PlayerCountryOdds
Lionel MessiArgentina+1000
Neymar Brazil+1000
Antoine GriezmannFrance+1200
Cristiano RonaldoPortugal+1600
Harry KaneEngland+1600
Timo WernerGermany+1600
Gabriel JesusBrazil+1600
Romelu LukakuBelgium+1800
Luis SuarezUruguay+2200
Edinson CavaniUruguay+2500
Diego Costa Spain+2500
Robert LewandowskiPoland+2800
Sergio AgueroArgentina+2800
Thomas MullerGermany+3300
Kylian MbappeFrance+3300
Gonzalo HiguainArgentina+3300
Dries MertensBelgium+3300
Olivier GiroudFrance+4000
Eden HazardBelgium+4000
Radamel Falcao Colombia+4000
IscoSpain+4000
Paulo DybalaArgentina+5000
Mohamed SalahEgypt+5000
James RodriguezColombia+5000
Philippe CoutinhoBrazil+5000
Roberto FirminoBrazil+5000
Iago AspasSpain+5000
RodrigoSpain+5000
Andre SilvaPortugal+6600
Mario MandzukicCroatia+6600
David SilvaSpain+6600
Jamie VardyEngland+8000
Javier HernandezMexico+8000
Ousmane DembeleFrance+8000
Kevin De Bruyne Belgium+10000
Christian EriksenDenmark+10000
Fyodor SmolovRussia+10000
Raheem SterlingEngland+10000
Arkadiusz MilikPoland+10000
Mesut OzilGermany +10000
Oribe Peralta Mexico+10000
PaulinhoBrazil+10000
Hirving LozanoMexico+10000
Carlos BaccaColombia+10000
Leon GoretzkaGermany+10000
Michy BatshuayiBelgium+10000
Marcus RashfordEngland+10000
Dele AlliEngland+10000
Jesse LingardEngland+12500
Ivan PerisicCroatia+12500
Paul Pogba France+15000
Gylfi SigurdssonIceland+15000
Bernardo SilvaPortugal+15000
Angel Di MariaArgentina+15000
Aleksandr MitrovicSerbia+15000
WillianBrazil+15000
Alexander IwobiNigeria+25000

Odds as of June 8 at Bovada

Bet on the 2018 World Cup here

Archived Articles

The beautiful game reaches its four-year pinnacle this June when 32 of the best footballing nations on the planet meet in Russia for the 2018 World Cup. Most of the reading and handicapping you’ll do in the lead-up to the final will be focused on the teams and who will win but this piece hones in on the players who will get their teams across the line and the odds on which one will finish as the tournament’s top goalscorer, winning the coveted Golden Boot award.

Before placing a Golden Boot bet, there are a couple of things you’ll want to consider as it’s not an easy wager to hit. I’ll do my best to break them down for you here, and at the end I’ll provide a few players I think have a good shot at heading home with the hardware.

Bet on the 2018 World Cup here

Look for a contender

In the 20 World Cup finals since the four-year cycle began in 1930, the top goalscorer has come from a team that placed first, second or third all but two times and, interestingly, the bronze medalists have had a share of an astounding 11 Golden Boot awards.

The theory behind looking for a contender is obvious as advancing further into the tournament gives you more fixtures to score goals but the reasoning behind third-place producing so many top scorers is a little more complex.

Historically, bronze-medal games have been higher-scoring, producing an extra half a goal on average when compared to gold-medal games. This is likely due to the perceived importance – or lack thereof – for the third-place fixture.

Of course, it’s nearly impossible to project who will finish exactly third in Russia so you’ll want to select players on the teams you think are most likely going to make it to the semifinals (Tip: take a look at the futures odds to see which nations sportsbooks think are most likely to win the tournament).

Find value

One of the most important pieces of this puzzle is finding a player who’s a bit under the radar but who’s going to heavily feature in a squad that has a good chance to go deep and it doesn’t necessarily have to be a striker.

The last two Golden Boot winners (James Rodriguez and Thomas Muller) were both attacking midfielders and while you’re going to want to mix in a high-priced No. 9 or two, middies can provide excellent value for the long-shot bettors out there.

James, for example, is the incumbent winner, yet he’s being offered at +5000 odds at Bovada. That said, there has never been a repeat Golden Boot winner and I don’t expect Colombia to make a darling run to the semifinals despite drawing one of the more favorable groups in the tournament.

My strategy for value is to take teams in the top 10 in World Cup futures, eliminate the Messis and Neymars and pick from the secondary scorers.

Now, let’s take a look at some of the options.

Pre-Tournament Picks

Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) +1200

My chalkiest pick, Ronaldo certainly has the scoring pedigree and he’s coming off a runner-up effort in the 2016 UEFA European Championship Golden Boot race.

Portugal is the kind of squad that’s built to go deep in this kind of competition – evidenced by their win in France – and I think they’re being shorted by oddsmakers.

The Portuguese will surely navigate themselves to the quarters at the very least after a disappointing effort in Brazil and with Rotten Ronnie turning 37 before Qatar 2022, CR7 will do his damnedest to leave his mark on the world stage in Russia this summer.

Timo Werner (Germany) +1600

Take this with a grain of salz as Joachim Low likes to keep his tactics under wraps for as long as possible and I’m not sure how much the German speedster will figure into the defending champion’s plans.

Werner is, however, the most talented striker the Germans have had in some time, possessing skills and speed atypical of a traditional Nationalelf No. 9.

I will be shocked if the Leipzig forward isn’t selected for the majority of the starting XI’s and with Germany installed as pre-tournament favorites, Werner should have ample time to ply his goal-scoring trade.

Dries Mertens (Belgium) +3300

The Belgians’ propensity to bottle things up makes this a bit of a hairy prospect but at face value, the Red Devils possess one of the top three or four most talented squads and Dries Mertens is a big reason for that.

The Napoli forward is the top scorer for the most lethal front three in Serie A, using his unique mix of pace and skill to lead the lines for the Light Blues.

Likely slotting into a wide position next to Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard for the majority of Belgium’s contests, Mertens will have plenty of service from EPL superstar Kevin De Bruyne. He won’t have to worry about scoring opportunities, it’s just a matter of how Dr. Dries takes them.

Kylian Mbappe (France) +3300

With just three goals for the senior squad in 12 caps and a massive French talent pool to pick from, Mbappe is flying under the radar a bit at +3300.

The super-talented teenager was “loaned” to PSG after a breakout season for Monaco and he’s gone on to score 13 goals in 25 matches with the Parisians.

The World Cup hasn’t always been the brightest stage for youngsters but James’ performance for the Colombians as a 22-year-old in 2014 showed what’s possible for players like Mbappe.

Roberto Firmino (Brazil) +6600

Playing second fiddle to the exhilarating Mohamed Salah this season, Roberto Firmino has not so quietly accumulated 25 goals for Liverpool across his 43 Premier League and Champions League appearances (thus far) and he’s a big reason for the Reds’ run to the UCL final as 10 of those 25 were scored in just 12 Champs League matches.

The list of potential attackers is long for the green and yellow but it would be robbery to keep the man they call Bobby Chompers out of the lineup given what he’s achieved with his club.

I’d recommend waiting until May 14 to make this bet as that’s when we’ll know for sure whether Roberto will be going to Russia. If he’s named to the 30-man squad? Fire away. If he’s not? Invest in either Gabriel Jesus or former Liverpool teammate Philippe Coutinho.

This page will be constantly updated throughout the World Cup so keep it bookmarked and watch for sudden changes on Twitter.

Golden Boot Betting Strategies

Here’s the complete Golden Boot oddsboard:

2018 World Cup Top Goalscorer Odds
PlayerCountryOdds
Lionel MessiArgentina+850
Neymar Brazil+900
Cristiano RonaldoPortugal+1200
Antoine GriezmannFrance+1400
Harry KaneEngland+1600
Timo WernerGermany+1600
Gabriel JesusBrazil+1600
Romelu LukakuBelgium+2000
Luis SuarezUruguay+2500
Thomas MullerGermany+2500
Edinson CavaniUruguay+2500
Robert LewandowskiPoland+2500
Sergio AgueroArgentina+2500
Kylian MbappeFrance+3300
Gonzalo HiguainArgentina+3300
Diego CostaSpain+3300
Dries MertensBelgium+3300
Olivier GiroudFrance+4000
Eden HazardBelgium+4000
Mario GomezGermany+5000
Paulo DybalaArgentina+5000
Mohamed SalahEgypt+5000
Radamel FalcaoColombia+5000
Jamie VardyEngland+5000
James RodriguezColombia+5000
Philippe CoutinhoBrazil+6600
Roberto FirminoBrazil+6600
Andre SilvaPortugal+6600
Leroy SaneGermany+6600
Mario MandzukicCroatia+6600
Javier HernandezMexico+8000
Kevin De Bruyne Belgium+10000
Christian EriksenDenmark+10000
Christian BentekeBelgium+10000
Fyodor SmolovRussia+10000
Raheem SterlingEngland+10000
Arkadiusz MilikPoland+10000
Mesut OzilGermany +10000
Oribe Peralta Mexico+10000
David SilvaSpain+10000
PaulinhoBrazil+10000
Hirving LozanoMexico+10000
Paul Pogba France+15000
Carlos Bacca Colombia+15000
Gylfi SigurdssonIceland+15000
Bernardo SilvaPortugal+15000

Odds as of May 29 at Bovada

Bet on the 2018 World Cup here

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