In our last check-in with the MLS Golden Boot odds, Valentin Castellanos was at the top of the oddsboard to be MLS’s top goal scorer at +350. Since then there’s been a drastic turn at the top because Castellanos was sold to Spanish side Girona for $15 million.
Before leaving, Castellanos led the league in scoring with 13 goals in 16 games. He’s now been passed by six other players on the goals board. So with Castellanos sold to a European side, how does the oddsboard shift?
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2022 MLS Golden Boot Odds
Odds as of August 23 at Sportsbook
Who Is MLS Golden Boot Favorite Sebastian Driussi?
The Austin FC attacking midfielder is in his second MLS season with Austin FC after being brought in from the Russian side Zenit Saint Petersburg to be a difference-maker in the MLS.
Driussi struggled to live up to those lofty expectations in his first season with Austin, scoring five goals in 17 games. But in his second season with Austin, he’s already scored 18 goals through 26 games, producing at a clip of nearly 0.70 goals per game. That’s almost 2.5 times more goals per game than in his first year with Austin.
When compared to other attacking midfielders in the MLS over the last 365 days, Driussi is in the 90th percentile (or above) for shooting percentage per 90, expected goals per 90 and goal-creating actions per 90. He’s a difference-maker and game-breaker in the MLS, just as Austin FC management thought he would be when they brought him over from Zenit.
Driussi’s Austin FC side has the third-best MLS Cup odds at +1200. If you think Driussi’s goal-scoring prowess can not only win the Golden Boot but push Austin to a championship, putting $100 on both would return a $1,280 profit.
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MLS Golden Boot Odds: Value Picks
Hany Mukhtar (+1200)
The Nashville SC striker is two goals behind Driussi in the Golden Boot race, but he only has the fourth-best odds to catch and pass Driussi. What might be reducing Mukhtar’s odds is Nashville’s schedule.
They have the 11th-hardest remaining schedule in the entire league. But since Mukhtar started his superb goal-scoring pace in May (14 goals in 15 games), the only teams he hasn’t scored against are clubs outside of the playoff picture. The German forward steps up and scores against the big clubs consistently.
At +1200, our odds calculator gives him 7.69 percent implied odd to win, but a $100 winning bet on him to win the MLS Golden Boot would return a pretty $1,200 profit.
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Jesus Ferreira (+900)
The American international has three goals in his last two games and now sits three back of league leader Sebastian Driussi.
He’s picked up the pace recently with those three goals, but his underlying numbers suggest he isn’t just getting lucky. Over his last five matches, he’s created an average of 3.2 shot-creating actions that’s up from the 2.4 he was averaging in his Sportsbook 26 matches. His expected goals have gone up as well from 0.37 to 0.46 in the same span.
MLS Golden Boot Pick: Hany Mukhtar
He’s in incredible form with a four-game goal streak (five goals) and 14 goals over his last 15 games. He may not hold the easiest remaining schedule among the players with the best Golden Boot odds. Cincinnati FC and their top scorer Brandon Vazquez hold that honor. Cincinnati has the third-easiest remaining schedule in the league.
But we know that Mukhtar, somehow, has a harder time scoring against teams lower in the standings. Playing tougher teams is actually ideal for him.
MLS Golden Boot - Last 10 Sportsbooks
Bradley Wright-Phillips, the former Manchester City player, is the only two-time MLS top goal scorer. The Englishman had a heck of an MLS career, scoring 117 goals across 234 career appearances for a conversion rate of a goal every other game. Excellent.