Could this be Mbappe's year?

The 2023-24 European Golden Shoe contenders: Mbappe closing in on Kane…

The 2023-24 season is the first in 20 years that doesn’t feature either Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo in one of Europe’s major leagues.

Those two names dominated the scoring charts across Europe for almost two entire decades, notching almost a thousand league goals combined and lifting no fewer than 10 European Golden Shoe awards.

But we’ve now arrived at a new era and some familiar names are inevitably dominating the scoring charts. We’ve taken a look at the top 10 goalscorers across Europe’s big five leagues – Ligue 1, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and the Premier League.

Note: if two players are tied on goals, we’ve ordered them by their goals-per-minute ratio. Girona’s Artem Dovbyk and Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke have each scored 14 goals but just miss out on cracking this top 10.

10. Deniz Undav – 14 goals

Stuttgart have been one of the stories of the season and still look well-placed for Champions League qualification.

The Brighton loanee has done a brilliant job of stepping in for the unavailable Serhou Guirassy in recent weeks, with 14 Bundesliga goals in just 19 appearances this season.

Averaging a goal or assist every 72 minutes in the German top flight, you’d imagine he’s a shoo-in for Julian Nagelsmann’s Germany squad for Euro 2024 this summer.

9. Borja Mayoral – 15 goals

The Getafe forward is on track to have his most prolific season yet. This has already been his best goalscoring return in La Liga and he isn’t showing any signs of slowing down soon.

He’s yet to receive a senior Spain call-up but it wouldn’t be a shock to see him make their Euro 2024 squad if he can keep up this form.

8. Mohamed Salah – 15 goals

It didn’t take Salah long to make an impact at Liverpool upon his return from AFCON. In just 46 minutes against Brentford, the 31-year-old managed to produce a goal and an assist to seal all three points.

If Liverpool are going to win the league this season, Salah’s goals will be crucial.

7. Luis Openda – 16 goals

RB Leipzig have made shedloads of cash selling off the likes of Josko Gvardiol, Dominik Szoboszlai, Christopher Nkunku and Timo Werner in recent years – and the Bundesliga club continue to churn out lucrative assets.

Belgium international Openda has scored 16 goals in 22 Bundesliga appearances since arriving from Lens last summer. He cost a considerable €43million, making him Leipzig’s record signing, but you imagine they’ll still be flipping him for a considerable profit in a year or two.

6. Jude Bellingham – 16 goals

The England international scored 10 goals in his first 10 appearances in all competitions, which equalled Cristiano Ronaldo’s record-breaking start. He only turned 20 last summer and already he looks like a leader at the heart of Los Blancos’ midfield. Ridiculous.

After he scored twice in a 2-1 comeback victory over Barcelona back in October, we’re reaching the point where it’s impossible to overhype Bellingham. He might just be the best player in the world.

READ: Jude Bellingham produced an El Clasico masterclass – he might genuinely be England’s greatest ever

5. Erling Haaland – 16 goals

The least surprising entry in the top 10, it’s a testament to Haaland’s ridiculously lethal quality that people actually questioned him earlier in the campaign.

The Norwegian will surely claim the Premier League’s Golden Boot again, having raced into an early lead in the top scorers’ chart with 16 goals in 19 appearances for Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions.

Having recently returned from injury and scored a characteristically clinical brace against Everton, you wouldn’t write him off catching ground on the names at the top end of this list.

READ: The fastest players to reach 50 goals in the Premier League: Haaland obliterates record…

4. Serhou Guirassy – 18 goals

A relatively lesser-known name, Guirassy signed for Stuttgart this summer after impressing there on loan from Rennes last season.

The 27-year-old Guinea international averaged a goal every other game in the German top flight last term and he’s bettering that ratio in 2023-24 so far with 18 goals in just 16 games, notching in almost every outing so far.

No player on this list has a better goals-per-minute return. Not even the man in the top spot. He’s only made one 28-minute cameo for Stuttgart since Christmas though, due to a mixture of injuries and AFCON.

3. Lautaro Martinez – 20 goals

The Argentinian World Cup winner has been in the form of his life in 2023-24 so far. A move to bring Romelu Lukaku back to the San Siro broke down after his flirtations with Juventus, but  Martinez has stepped up in his old strike partner’s absence to be the Nerazzurri’s out-and-out talisman up top.

He’s averaged a goal every 93 minutes in Serie A this season and has probably been Inter’s standout player. He’s been absolutely pivotal in them sitting comfortably at the top of the table.

Back in September, Martinez underlined his status as one of Europe’s most lethal marksmen with a spellbinding four-goal, 35-minute cameo against Salernitana. Absolutely outrageous.

2. Kylian Mbappe – 21 goals

Having registered a respectable average of 24 league goals a season for PSG since arriving from Monaco back in 2017, Mbappe has surprisingly only broken the 30-goal mark once (33 back in 2018-19) and is yet to claim a European Golden Shoe.

Now that Messi and Neymar have left, this season is Mbappe’s first in which he’s undoubtedly the main man at the Parc des Princes.

Having scored 21 goals in 20 appearances that total 1629 minutes, this year – his last in Paris? – looks as though his numbers are going stratospheric.

1. Harry Kane – 25 goals

Things might not be going to plan for Bayern, but the England captain is enjoying a sensational debut season in Germany. He’s already scored more than any Bundesliga player managed last season, having reached that milestone before Germany’s winter break.

It was only a couple of years back that Robert Lewandowski broke Gerd Muller’s long-held record of 40 league goals in a Bundesliga season, but Kane is currently on track to beat that. He’s already scored three hat-tricks and notched a further five assists to boot.

Just Kane’s luck to do that and sit eight points behind Bayern’s most formidable challengers in over a decade.

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