Cristiano Ronaldo is chasing his fifth European Golden Shoe awardApril 6, 2016
Cristiano Ronaldo is chasing a fifth European Golden Shoe after adding to his tally with the winner in El Clasico at the weekend.
The Real Madrid star is already the only man to have won the award on four separate occasions and is only one goal adrift of Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain and Benfica’s Jonas this season.
With more games remaining in Spain than Portugal, and Higuain facing a four-game suspension in Italy, Ronaldo is well placed to retain the prize.
However, the race for the Golden Shoe isn’t as straightforward as it seems. As well as goals, the strength of the league you’re playing in is also a factor.
How does it work?
There are two factors that come into play when deciding who will receive the Golden Shoe – goals and the UEFA coefficient ranking.
The goals speak for themselves – you have to score quite a few and penalties count – but the league rankings are slightly trickier.
Cristiano Ronaldo has won the European Golden Shoe on four occasions. That’s a record, with Lionel Messi his nearest rival with three wins and eight more players having won the gong twice.
Essentially, each player’s goal tally is multiplied by the ranking of the league they score in.
The five toughest leagues are given the highest rating of 2.0, the next group are assigned a 1.5 rating and the final leagues are given 1.0.
For the current season, the Portuguese league edged out the French league to be included among Europe’s five strongest alongside La Liga, the Bundesliga, the Premier League and Serie A.
As a result, Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s 30 goals for Paris St Germain are worth only 45 points while Jonas’s 30 goals for Benfica are worth 60 points.
The coefficient weighting was introduced during the 1996/97 season, and has seen a league with a 2.0 ranking winning the Golden Shoe in all but one season since.
Henrik Larsson was the exception, winning the accolade during his 35-goal season for Celtic, with the Scottish Premiership having a 1.5 ranking at the time.