The Portugal international netted once at the weekend to nearly close the gap with his rival, while several more players in the top 10 scored
Cristiano Ronaldo has neared Liverpool star Luis Suarez to within one goal in the European Golden Shoe standings following his stunning long-range strike in Real Madrid’s 5-0 win over Real Betis on Saturday.
The Portugal star has now scored an impressive 21 goals this season, with Suarez still on 22 after his failure to find the net in the 2-2 draw against Aston Villa.
Third-placed Diego Costa did not add to his tally either as Atletico Madrid were held to a 1-1 draw by Sevilla on Sunday.
Elsewhere, Sergio Aguero climbed to joint-fourth place after scoring his 14th goal of the season in Manchester City’s 4-2 win over Cardiff City.
Eredivisie top scorer Alfred Finnbogason, Porto striker Jackson Martinez and PSG star Zlatan Ibrahimovic all got their names on the scoresheet as well at the weekend to strengthen their spot in the top 10.
* = league season finished
History & How It Works
Players such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Thierry Henry and Diego Forlan have won the European Golden Shoe in the past few seasons, with the Argentina international as the latest winner of the award following his 46 goals in 2012-13.
Other noteworthy winners include the likes of Francesco Totti, Luca Toni, Ronaldo, Marco van Basten, Eusebio and Gerd Muller.
The weightings are determined by the league’s ranking on the Uefa coefficients, which in turn depend on the results of each league’s clubs in European competition over the previous five seasons. Goals scored in the top five leagues according to the Uefa coefficients are multiplied by a factor of two, and goals scored in the leagues ranked six to 21 are multiplied by 1.5. Goals in all other leagues are worth one single point.
This measure has prevented players from so-called weaker leagues from winning the European Golden Shoe, since a goal scored in, for example, Armenia, Estonia or Azerbaijan, carries less weight than a goal scored in Serie A, La Liga, the Bundesliga or the Premier League.