With the opening few weeks of the new campaign providing some surprising scorelines and plenty of goals, the contenders for the Premier League 2015/16 Golden Boot award are already starting to emerge.
With Premier League sides strengthening across the board, most teams now have a goalscorer capable of providing a decent return this season, from table-toppers Manchester City to relegation candidates Bournemouth.
While there are bound to be many twists, turns and surprises throughout the season, here are seven players that I believe are in with a chance of lifting the Golden Boot this season:
Wilson is a real under-dog, but he proved last season that he is capable of finding the back of the net. The 23-year-old scored 20 times in 45 games last season, which helped Bournemouth to secure promotion to the Premier League for the first time in their history. Despite a slow start, the striker bagged a hat-trick in the 4-3 victory over West Ham, and I would expect plenty more over the course of the season.
Lukaku provides the perfect combination of brawn and beauty. Standing at over 6 feet tall, and weighing in at 225 pounds, he is capable of terrifying defenders just by looking at them. At just 22 years old, he has already began developing into a top footballer at Everton, scoring 38 goals in his first two seasons with the club. Not yet in his prime, the Belgian still has a long way to go, but I would expect plenty of goals from the man-mountain this season.
While he is often overlooked, Gomes is already a world-class striker. A few clubs have made advances for the Swansea player this summer, but the club have rejected any attempts to lure him away as they look to him to deliver them goals this season. Since his switch to the Premier League side from Ligue 1’s Olympique Lyon last summer, Gomes has already provided 10 goals, and he has particularly excelled since Wilfried Bony departed for Manchester City in January. He has started the new campaign in phenomenal form, scoring three goals in three appearances, and if he continues in the same vein throughout the season, his name will be top of the list come May.
Benteke’s power will make him a vital cog in Liverpool’s machine this season. The side struggled for goals last term, and an out-and-out goalscorer is exactly what they needed to solve the issue. In his first two matches he has already started to provide the club with a return on their investment, having already scored his first goal. Brendan Rodgers has tinkered with his formation and style of play to suit the towering Belgian, and if his team-mates can create more opportunities for him, his tally is bound to rise.
The Tottenham front-man lifted himself to stardom with an amazing 2014/15 campaign. Kane is a clinical finisher, and at the age of 21, Kane is already shaping himself into a legend at the North London club. He has failed to find the back of the net in the first three matches of the new campaign, and fans will be beginning to wonder whether he is nothing more than a one-season wonder, but I would expect his quick-thinking and ability to assess the situation around him to help him find the back of the net sooner, rather than later.
The Spanish international had a superb debut season at Stamford Bridge, scoring 19 goals throughout Chelsea’s title-winning campaign. Though plagued by fitness issues throughout the previous season, Costa has shrugged off doubts over his ability to stay fit and has already opened his account during the 3-2 victory over West Brom at the weekend. Costa is already a proven goalscorer, both at Chelsea and Atletico Madrid, and if he keeps up his present form and momentum, we can expect more great results from the Chelsea star.
Aguero has already made his name as one of the best, if not the best, out-and-out striker in world football, and at the age of 27, he is now entering his prime. Having scored 52 goals in just 87 Premier League matches, he has taken Manchester City’s goalscoring probability to new heights in recent years. His pace, power and amazing finishing abilities always provide a challenge to opposition defenders, and with some fantastic appearances during the early stages of the new campaign, Aguero’s goalscoring feats are likely to continue this term.