Aside from the outright winner itself, the race for the Golden Boot is always one of the most talked about – and indeed betted on – subjects heading into a major tournament.
Antoine Griezmann won the last European Championship Golden Boot in 2016, becoming only the second ever player in the tournament’s history to score more than five goals after his compatriot Michel Platini’s astonishing tally of nine in 1984.
Generally, then, five goals is enough to win the accolade, although with the introduction of an extra knockout round since 2016, perhaps six is now the magic number.
Either way, there are plenty of players capable of producing that sort of tally, with one in particular standing out.
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Golden Boot Best Bet: Romelu Lukaku @ 7/1 (bet365)
Belgium scored the most goals at the World Cup in 2018 and in Euro 2020 qualifying, with Roberto Martinez generally favouring attack-minded football across his managerial career.
Moreover, Belgium, who lead the FIFA World Rankings heading into Euro 2020, have been handed a relatively straightforward passage through to the knockout stages from Group B, having been placed alongside Denmark, Russia and Finland.
The Danes will be tough customers, but there’s every chance the Red Devils can rack up the goals against both Russia, who they scored seven goals against in two games during qualifying, and Finland.
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With Kevin De Bruyne feeding Romelu Lukaku, the forward will be licking his lips. He should receive plenty of opportunities to add to his astonishing tally of 60 goals in 93 caps for his country. Indeed, the former Manchester United forward struck 24 times in Serie A this season on the way to helping Inter Milan win their first domestic title since 2010, so the 28-year-old will be full of confidence and raring to lead his nation to glory.
Next Best: Memphis Depay @ 18/1 (William Hill)
I was torn between Karim Benzema and Memphis Depay on this one at similar odds, but ultimately sided with the latter for two reasons.
Firstly, while I do expect Benzema to start most matches having been recalled to France’s squad under Didier Deschamps, I’d imagine Les Blues’ goals will be shared around with Griezmann and Kylian Mbappe equally capable in front of goal.
Benzema also missed a penalty in a recent friendly win against Wales, so Griezmann could be the man from the spot.
Secondly, France are in the Group of Death, whereas the Netherlands appear to be in the weakest group in the competition alongside Ukraine, Austria and North Macedonia, so Depay should have plenty of opportunities to continue his superb goalscoring form of late.
Indeed, the 27-year-old ended the domestic season with six goals in six matches for Lyon and has scored three goals in Holland’s two warm-up friendlies.
Depay takes penalties and he is also out of contract at his club this summer, so will be even more motivated than usual to secure a lucrative offer (potentially from Ronald Koeman’s Barcelona) in what is likely to be the biggest pay day of his career.
Golden Boot Each Way Dark Horse: Diogo Jota @ 50/1 (bet365)
Despite being in the aforementioned ‘Group of Death’, I still expect Portugal to go far at Euro 2020, so Diogo Jota looks a real value pick after enjoying a superb debut season at Liverpool.
Only Gareth Bale and Kelechi Iheanacho scored more goals per minute than Jota managed (nine at a rate of every 124 minutes) in the Premier League this season, with the Portugal forward shining for the Reds either side of the serious knee injury he sustained in December. Jota has bagged six goals in only 13 caps for his country, too.
While the 24-year-old may not be a guaranteed starter given that he is competing against the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Joao Felix, Andre Silva and Bernardo Silva for one of three spots in Portugal’s attack, I expect him to receive the nod from Fernando Santos in most of their matches.
Even if he does find himself on the bench once or twice, Jota has proved himself to be a superb substitute for Liverpool, scoring four goals in seven appearances from the bench this season.
Midfielders such as Ilkay Gundogan, Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden, Dani Olmo and Georginio Wijnaldum have been priced at the same odds to win the Golden Boot as Jota, so as a top-class forward he’s a clear value selection.
Read more: Outright Winner
Please note: Above bookmakers are the best odds on the respective players available, but some bookmakers are offering excellent promotions in the Golden Boot market. Sky Bet lead the way by providing a £3 free bet every time your player scores, while Paddy Power are offering a £1 free bet every time your selection has a shot on target.
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