Barcelona forward Lionel Messi was awarded with his second ESM Golden shoe for scoring the most goals in Europe – with a record total.
Messi scored an incredible 50 league goals during the 2011-12 season to finish four goals ahead of his closest rival Cristiano Ronaldo. The Real Madrid winger scored six more goals than when winning the award last season but could not rival the prolific Argentinian.
This is the second Golden Shoe award picked up by Messi who also claimed the accolade in the 2009-10 season with 34 goals.
His record haul came from 37 La Liga appearances and included six hat-tricks and two four-goal games.
It was a good season for strikers with Robin van Persie, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Wayne Rooney also recording their highest-ever tallies for a league campaign.
ESM Golden Shoe standings
1. Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona) 50 x 2 = 100
2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF) 46 x 2 = 92
3. Robin van Persie (Arsenal FC) 30 x 2 = 60
4. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (FC Schalke 04) 29 x 2 = 58
5. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (AC Milan) 28 x 2 = 56
6. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United FC) 27 x 2 = 54
7. Mario Gomez (FC Bayern München) 26 x 2 = 52
8. Bas Dost (sc Heerenveen) 32 x 1.5 = 48
8= Falcao (Club Atlético de Madrid) 24 x 2 = 48
8= Diego Milito (FC Internazionale Milano) 24 x 2 = 48
8= Burak Yilmaz (Trabzonspor A?) 32 x 1.5 = 48
Only the leading five countries – Spain, Italy, Germany, France and England – in the UEFA rankings have two as their multiplier. This is to emphasise the difference in (international) performance level between clubs from those countries and those of other nations.
A player cannot play first in a summer league (e.g. Norway) and then in a winter league (e.g. Spain) and combine the points totals for each season.