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Betting Special: Messi favourite to outscore Ronaldo, Suarez and Griezmann

17:09 EAT 14/08/2017
HD Lionel Messi Barcelona Real Madrid ICC
The usual suspects lead the betting to top the Primera Division scoring charts, but could this season see a different name break through?

In each of the last nine years the top goalscorer in La Liga has netted over 30 goals, a statistic which significantly narrows down the list of potential candidates to be the leading marksman this season.

Between them, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have won the Pichichi Trophy (awarded to the league's top scorer) in eight of the last nine years, with Luis Suarez in 2014-15 the only player capable of breaking their duopoly.

Indeed, those three players are way out in front in bet365's market with Messi the outright favourite at 11/10 (2.10), Ronaldo offered at 10/3 (4.33) after having his five-game suspension confirmed, four of which are in La Liga, and Suarez is priced at 7/4 (2.75).

It will be interesting to see how the departure of Neymar affects the respective goalscoring returns of both Messi and Suarez, although Barcelona remain adamant that they will be bringing in a big-money, high-profile replacement.

Last season Messi scored 37 goals in 34 league apperances, eight more than Suarez who was the second top scorer in the Primera Division.

Ronaldo, meanwhile, scored just 25 goals, his lowest total since moving to the Bernabeu, with Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane chosing to consistently rest the 32-year-old. Expect that policy to continue this term and while there is no doubting the Portugal international's sensational scoring ability, his lack of minutes may mean he has to relinquish expectations of adding to his healthy collection of Pichichi trophies.

If Ronaldo will be rested, could there be value in backing another Real Madrid player to assume the side's goalscoring responsibilities? With the sale of Alvaro Morata, Karim Benzema will once more be the undisputed number nine for Los Blancos and the Frenchman can be backed at 50/1 (51.00) to be crowned as the country's most prolific scorer.

The 29-year-old however, has never come anywhere near netting 30 league goals in a season (his most prolific campaign was 2015-16 with 24) and last year he managed just 11 league strikes.

Meanwhile, Benzema's compatriot, Antoine Griezmann, is offered at 33/1 (34.00) and the 26-year-old will be expected once more to lead the way for Atletico Madrid in terms of goalscoring. Last season was a little disappointing for the former Real Sociedad forward though, who netted just 16 times and he will be hoping for a considerable improvement. 

Elsewhere in the market, Iago Aspas, who was the top scoring Spaniard last season with 18 goals, can be backed at 100/1 (101.00), the same price as Athletic Bilbao veteran Aritz Aduriz was when the leading Spanish marksman in 2015-16.