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Messi takes initiative in Golden Shoe race

Published: Tuesday 26 April 2011, 14.58CET
Lionel Messi came off the bench to score his 31st Liga goal of the season at the weekend for FC Barcelona to establish a four-point lead at the top of the ESM Golden Shoe rankings.
Messi takes initiative in Golden Shoe race
Lionel Messi celebrates with Daniel Alves and Ibrahim Afellay after striking against Osasuna ©Getty Images

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Published: Tuesday 26 April 2011, 14.58CET

Messi takes initiative in Golden Shoe race

Lionel Messi came off the bench to score his 31st Liga goal of the season at the weekend for FC Barcelona to establish a four-point lead at the top of the ESM Golden Shoe rankings.

Lionel Messi extended his lead atop the ESM Golden Shoe standings to four points after sealing a 2-0 victory for FC Barcelona over CA Osasuna.

Initially rested ahead of Wednesday's UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg at Real Madrid CF, the Argentina forward entered the fray just before the hour and added to David Villa's first-half opener three minutes from time. It allowed him to edge further ahead of nearest rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who also started on the bench but failed to make his mark as Madrid ended Valencia CF's unbeaten record at the Mestalla this season with a 6-3 win.

Another striker consistently finding the net is Edinson Cavani. The 24-year-old SSC Napoli striker struck his 26th league goal of the campaign from the spot at US Città di Palermo on Saturday. It was not enough to prevent a 2-1 loss, but did move him into third place alongside Udinese Calcio's Antonio Di Natale.

Mario Gomez consolidated fifth position after his fourth goal in two games rescued a point for FC Bayern München in their 1-1 draw with relegation-threatened Eintracht Frankfurt. Meanwhile, Samuel Eto’o moved above Kenny Miller, scoring FC Internazionale Milano's second as they came from behind to beat S.S. Lazio 2-1.

ESM Golden Shoe standings: 26 April

1. Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona) 31 x 2 = 62
2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF) 29 x 2 = 58
3. Antonio Di Natale (Udinese Calcio) 26 x 2 = 52
Edinson Cavani (SSC Napoli) 26 x 2 = 52
5. Mario Gomez (FC Bayern München) 23 x 2 = 46
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
Samuel Eto'o (FC Internazionale Milano) 20 x 2 = 40
10.Kenny Miller (Rangers FC/Bursaspor) 26 x 1,5 = 39

Rules
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.

Last updated: 26/04/11 15.56CET

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