Sam Allardyce & Duncan Ferguson Name Their top 5 Strikers at the World Cup

James Budgen

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Sam Allardyce & Duncan Ferguson Name Their top 5 Strikers at the World Cup

In this week's episode of the No Tippy Tappy Football Podcast via William Hill, Big Sam was joined by his old first-team coach at Everton, Duncan Ferguson, where they discussed their list of the best strikers attending this winter’s World Cup in Qatar.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Attending his fifth World Cup and at 37 years old, you’d think that this will be the last time Cristiano Ronaldo appears at a world cup, but again you wouldn't put it past him to keep in physical condition to become the first player to appear at six World Cups.

Duncan Ferguson on Cristiano Ronaldo: “absolutely phenomenal at his age, the condition he's in, the goals he's scored.”

For the first time, Ronaldo is entering the World Cup as record holder of the most international goals, and he will definitely be looking to add to his 119 goals as he looks to complete his trophy set.

Ronaldo hasn’t had the best of times at World Cup, scoring only one goal in each of his first three campaigns, before netting four at the 2018 World Cup, but he hasn’t been able to get his side past the round of 16 since his first World Cup in 2006, only winning one game at each of his past three appearances.

While he would be disappointed with his lack of game time at Manchester United this season, it could mean that he enters the World Cup with fresh legs, while others could be tired playing twice a week, which at his age could put him right at the top of his game to put all his energy into helping his side get far in the tournament.

Lionel Messi

Like Ronaldo, this is likely Messi’s last World Cup appearance at 35 years old, and after four unsuccessful appearances, this could be his best chance at winning the tournament with an Argentinian side that is not only a year out from winning the Copa America, but hasn’t lost since July 2019, a stretch of 35 games, with 24 wins and 11 draws.

Messi has looked back to his best this season, scoring 12 goals and assisting 13 times for PSG, the only player in the top five leagues so far with 10+ goals and assists and in 2022 for Argentina has excelled with 10 goals and two assists in six games.

At previous World Cups, teams have been able to neutralise Messi at times by putting multiple players on him, amassing six goals and five assists in 19 World Cup games, but if he brings his form from the Copa America, scoring four goals and grabbing five assists, he could really light up his fifth World Cup like we’ve never seen before.

Big Sam on Lionel Messi: “they are going to need the team around him to provide him the service, without the team around you as an individual, they start limiting your chances.”

Robert Lewandowski

Only appearing in his second-ever World Cup at the age of 34, Lewandowski would want his legacy to be a lot better than his last campaign as Poland were knocked out in the group stage and he didn’t score a goal in a group they were expected to advance in.

Since the 2018 World Cup, Lewandowski has gone to another level, scoring 123 goals in his last 106 league appearances and despite a rough Nations League campaign, he had a great qualification campaign scoring nine goals in nine games.

Lewandowski will also be looking to put himself into the top ten international goalscorers of all time, needing only one goal to put himself level with Pele on 77 goals, while four goals would place him seventh on the list.

Harry Kane

Harry Kane is coming into this tournament with big expectations on his shoulders, both as a goalscorer and a captain expecting to lead his country far into the World Cup as he has done in his previous two international tournaments.

Kane’s only World Cup so far was the 2018 World Cup in Russia, where he finished as the top scorer with six goals in six games, which gives him the best goal-to-game ratio out of any England player in World Cup history, and along with Christian Vieri, has the best goal-scoring ratio out of anyone who has played at the World Cup this century.

Along with Memphis Depay, Harry Kane was top scorer in the UEFA World Cup qualification, scoring 12 goals averaging a goal every 49 minutes and what would make this World Cup even sweeter for Kane is that he can easily become England’s all-time top scorer, only needing two goals to tie and three goals to overtake Wayne Rooney as his country’s top scorer.

Kylian Mbappe

The 2018 World Cup was the coming out party to the world for 19-year-old Kylian Mbappe, not only scoring a wonderful goal in World Cup final to help his side win, but playing a massive part throughout the tournament and along with Antoine Griezmann topping his country’s scoring charts with four goals.

At just 23 years old, Mbappe already has 59 caps and 28 goals for his country, placing him already in the top ten scorers in France’s history and with many World Cups left in him, Mbappe has a real chance to become the tournament’s record scorer, currently held by Miroslav Klose with 16.

This will definitely be helped by the array of talent Mbappe will have around him to facilitate his scoring with two world-class creators in Griezmann and Karim Benzema and with France likely to go deep in the tournament, a Golden Boot is very possible for the Frenchman.

Both Big Sam and Duncan picked Mbappe as their top scorer for the tournament with Duncan saying: “France will go deep in the tournament, he will knock a few in.”

Romelu Lukaku

A player Big Sam specifically mentioned as to who he thinks is great is Romelu Lukaku, saying: “the one thing he can do, where he hasn't got enough credit for, is score goals.”

Lukaku has been by far Belgium’s best-ever striker, scoring 68 goals for his country at a rate of a goal every 97 minutes, with the next best scorer with under half of his goals being Eden Hazard with 33 goals.

While Belgium have failed to reach their goals with their ‘Golden Generation’, Lukaku has been able to score goals at international tournaments, scoring four goals in his past two tournaments and with Kevin De Bruyne supplying him, we’ve seen what Erling Haaland can do this season with his service.

What could either really benefit or hurt Lukaku is his injuries this season, he is in a race to get fit for the World Cup after only making 5 appearances for Inter Milan this season, which could hurt him if he isn't fit, but if he is fit, he could be the freshest player at a tournament.

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