The huge festival of football that is the World Cup is just around the corner and, fresh from winning the Premier League, many Manchester City players will now want to help their country to the biggest prize of all.
There’s plenty to be won in Russia other than the big prize though, with reputations made and players' values increasing overnight through a good performance. One way to make waves without making the final is to grab the Golden Boot.
From Lineker to Ronaldo, Eusebio to Rodriguez, the cherished Golden Boot can land a player in the history books without them lifting the major prize. For Columbia’s James Rodriguez, it meant a move to Real Madrid and worldwide acclaim.
In terms of Manchester City players, there’s one or two who could easily find themselves amongst the tournament's leading scorers. One who will hope to be on the list is Argentina striker Sergio Aguero.
To win the Golden Boot you need to get off to a good start, so being placed in a reasonable group is a big bonus. Argentina don’t have that; they face Nigeria, Croatia and Iceland in a tough looking opening phase.
That shouldn’t bother Aguero, though; he’s priced as wide as 25/1 with some outlets, and he’s a player with a keen eye for goal. With 33 and counting for Manchester City, 20 of those in the Premier League, he’s used to bagging against top-quality opposition.
The big question is whether he’ll start regularly for his country, which isn’t a problem for Gabriel Jesus, another blue who will be hoping to make an impression.
The young Brazilian can be found at 20/1 for those willing to scour the different sites and is widely expected to spearhead the second favourites' attack. They have Switzerland, Serbia and Costa Rica in their opening group stage too, a set of fixtures that looks conducive to scoring a few goals.
Having said that, Costa Rica surprised both England and Italy in 2014 and might be a surprise package once more. Jesus hasn’t been as prolific as he may have hoped in the Premier League, either - he's scored 11 in 25.
Brazil are second favourites, but perhaps Manchester City might have a potential Golden Boot winner playing for the tournament favourites? Leroy Sane has been in tremendous form for Pep Guardiola’s side this season but has only scored nine times. Much of his game is based around creating chances for others, but it would be unwise to rule him out of the discussion completely.
He’s priced at 66/1 in some outlets, which is surprisingly high but he's more likely to be providing Timo Werner and Thomas Muller than scoring for himself. If there was a market for player of the tournament, you could rely on him being on a much shorter price.
Three of our players can be found at 100/1 - all worthy of a speculative punt. Kevin De Bruyne is the most notable, especially with group games against Panama and Tunisia offering a chance to get off to a good start.
David Silva can also be found at 100/1 and even England’s own Raheem Sterling is priced similarly. Silva has got ten in all competitions this season, but he’s highly unlikely to score a hatful in Russia - he's far more comfortable as creator rather than provider. Whilst they're the best priced Manchester City players, there's also the rest of our top flight to think about, and with that in mind, you can see more at FootballTips.com. Although, Neymar sits top of most people's lists for most likely top scorer.
If the Golden Boot winner does come from the Premier League, it is likely it will be a Manchester City player. Four of our top-flight players are in the top twelve names, with Romelu Lukaku and Harry Kane the only non-City players with short odds.
We’re only a few months away from the tournament now and, upon its conclusion, we’ll have seen some great football, some legends bow out and some new names catapulted to world stardom. The trick for the conscientious gambler is knowing which ones to pick before we start.
Aguero - By Oleg Bkhambri (Voltmetro) - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
Leroy Sane - By Ailura, CC BY-SA 3.0 AT, CC BY-SA 3.0