Euro 2024 kicks off in Germany on June 14, with the hosts and other members of Europe’s elite planning to lift the trophy a month later.
Italy are the reigning Euro 2020 champions after beating England on penalties at Wembley.
The Azzurri’s victory did not rely on a prolific goalscorer, Ciro Immobile, Federico Chiesa, Manuel Locatelli, Mateo Pessina and Lorenzo Insigne scored two goals each.
However, forwards who are at the top of their game throughout the tournament are usually the hallmark of winning teams.
With that in mind, here are some of the front-runners for the Euro 2024 Golden Boot, each with their sights firmly set on the bigger collective prize.
MORE: England at Euros: Results, wins, records
Who will win the Golden Boot at Euro 2024?early contenders
Romelu Lukaku (Belgium)
Lukaku’s club career has been on a roller-coaster ride in recent seasons after a big-money move to Chelsea only to see his loan return to Inter Milan fail. The 30-year-old is enjoying a renaissance after reuniting with Jose Mourinho at Roma and topped the scoring charts with an incredible 14 goals in the Euro 2024 qualifiers, with Belgium now Coached by former Schalke coach Domenico Tedesco. .
Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
Ronaldo is joint top scorer with Czech star Patrick Schick at Euro 2020 with five goals. This game could be his last hurray at the top level and don’t expect him to go quietly. When Ronaldo lost his starting spot to Goncalo Ramos at the 2022 World Cup, it felt like his international career was coming to an end. However, Roberto Martinez has had faith in him since taking over as head coach and the 38-year-old scored 10 goals in qualifying to extend his men’s international goals record to 128.
More: Cristiano Ronaldo at Euros: stats, matches, goals, wins, records
Harry Kane (England)
Winner of the 2018 World Cup Golden Boot with 6 goals, Kane has already proven himself to be a major tournament animal, scoring 4 goals at Euro 2020 and at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. England have scored one goal in every knockout match. He missed a late penalty in the quarter-final defeat to France and his scoring spree didn’t add up.
He scored England’s next penalty against Italy, becoming the country’s all-time top scorer. Kane has impressed since joining Bayern Munich last summer and looks ready to shine in an England team that now has a truly viable talent pool. Maybe you really went home this time?
Kylian Mbappe (France)
Kylian Mbappe’s hat-trick in the World Cup final secured Qatar’s Golden Boot, but it wasn’t enough to deny Argentina. The Paris Saint-Germain superstar has now scored in back-to-back World Cup finals, a distinction he shares with Vava, the star of Brazil’s back-to-back successes in 1958 and 1962 . Curiously, he did not score in the European Cup that bears his name, having failed to score in four games at the last continental championship. Expect that to change quickly as he spearheads the Blues’ latest bid for glory.
More: France at the European Championships: results, wins, records in European Championship history
Alvaro Morata (Spain)
Watching Morata step up and take the penalty in the Euro 2020 semi-final against Italy was like watching a car crash in slow motion. Of course, he equalized with his third goal of the tournament to secure a 1-1 draw, but the forward has been lacking in confidence for much of the past month, missing several chances and losing Starting position. Sure enough, Gianluigi Donnarumma came to the rescue and the Azzurri began their date with destiny.
A few years later, Morata returned to Atletico Madrid and returned to form under Diego Simeone. He was Spain’s starting center forward and captain during the Euro 2024 qualifiers. Sign us up for a redemption arc.
Nicholas Volkrug (Germany)
Since the last European Cup, the host Germany has changed coaches twice and has been short of reliable centers for a long time. Take a step forward, Nicholas Folkruger. The late-blooming 30-year-old’s performances at Werder Bremen saw him first named in Germany’s 2022 World Cup squad before moving to Borussia Dortmund, where he has had a circuitous path to the top.
Falkrug is a burly, old-fashioned team leader who has adapted perfectly to international football, scoring 10 goals in 13 games. He’s not a guaranteed starter, but it’s not hard to imagine him scoring early in the tournament and then peaking. Think Toto Schillaci of Italia 90. Fullkrug might be the folk hero Germany needs.