Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo remain locked in battle at the top of the ESM Golden Shoe standings after both increased their tallies for their respective clubs in Saturday's 1-1 Liga draw between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid CF.
Honours were even at the Santiago Bernabéu as the Spanish giants contested the first of a quartet of high-profile contests in the space of less than three weeks. Ronaldo salvaged a point for ten-man Madrid with an 82nd-minute penalty after his rival had also registered from the spot. The goals represented a first for both players, Madrid's No7 having never previously scored against Barcelona and Messi breaking his duck against sides coached by José Mourinho.
As a result, the Argentina forward continues to lead the way by two points from the Portuguese international, with Antonio Di Natale six behind Ronaldo in third. The Udinese Calcio marksman missed Sunday's trip to Edinson Cavani's SSC Napoli due to a foot injury, but he was able to stay clear of the man directly below him in the table as Cavani had a penalty saved in a damaging 2-1 loss for the hosts.
Fifth spot now belongs to Mario Gomez after he plundered a hat-trick in FC Bayern München's 5-1 defeat of Bayer 04 Leverkusen to leap ahead of Dimitar Berbatov. The Manchester United FC striker has also been caught by Moussa Sow following the latter's opener in LOSC Lille Métropole's 1-1 stalemate with FC Girondins de Bordeaux.
ESM Golden Shoe standings: 18 April
1. Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona) 30 x 2 = 60
2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF) 29 x 2 = 58
3. Antonio Di Natale (Udinese Calcio) 26 x 2 = 52
4. Edinson Cavani (SSC Napoli) 25 x 2 = 50
5. Mario Gomez (FC Bayern München) 22 x 2 = 44
6. Dimitar Berbatov (Manchester United FC) 21 x 2 = 42
Moussa Sow (LOSC Lille Métropole) 21 x 2 = 42
8. Papiss Demba Cissé (SC Freiburg) 20 x 2 = 40
9. Kenny Miller (Rangers FC/Bursaspor) 26 x 1,5 = 39
10. Samuel Eto'o (FC Internazionale Milano) 19 x 2 = 38
Marco Di Vaio (Bologna FC) 19 x 2 = 38
Carlos Tévez (Manchester City FC) 19 x 2 = 38
Only the leading five countries – Spain, Italy, Germany, France and England – in the UEFA rankings have two as their multiplier. This is to emphasise the difference in (international) performance level between clubs from those countries and those of other nations.
A player cannot play first in a summer league (e.g. Norway) and then in a winter league (e.g. Spain) and combine the points totals for each season.
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