Long assumed, but now confirmed: Atlanta United striker Josef Martinez won the 2018 MLS Golden Boot trophy, finishing with 31 regular-season goals, nine more than Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s 22.

Martinez broke the league’s single-season goal record in August against Orlando City SC, though has scored just three in eight games since. And with Sunday bringing the curtain down on the 2018 MLS campaign, he completed one of the world’s most impressive goal-scoring seasons in 2018, bagging No. 31 in the 77th minute of a 4-1 defeat at Toronto FC.

Martinez finished just shy of the totals posted by Barcelona’s Lionel Messi (34 goals) and Liverpool’s Mohammed Salah (32 goals) in their respective 2017-18 domestic campaigns, and ahead of those from Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane (30), Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandoski (29) and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo (26).

In terms of production rate, Martinez’s 0.912 goals per game finished just shy of Messi’s .944 mark and above the others mentioned above.

The Venezuelan was the focal point of Atlanta’s attack that scored an MLS-high 70 goals in 2018.

Last year, Martinez scored 19 goals in just 20 games. He finished five goals behind Chicago Fire’s Nemanja Nikolic in the Golden Boot race despite playing 14 less games.

In 2018, it was all Martinez. Now, he and Atlanta turn to the 2018 Audi MLS Cup playoffs.

All-time MLS Golden Boot winners

  • 2018:    31 goals – Josef Martinez (Atlanta United)
  • 2017:    24 goals – Nemanja Nikolic (Chicago Fire)
  • 2016:    24 goals – Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls)
  • 2015:    22 goals – Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto FC), Kei Kamara (Columbus Crew SC)
  • 2014:    27 goals – Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls)
  • 2013:    22 goals – Camilo Sanvezzo (Vancouver Whitecaps FC)
  • 2012:    27 goals – Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
  • 2011:    16 goals – Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
  • 2010:    18 goals – Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
  • 2009:    17 goals – Jeff Cunningham (FC Dallas)
  • 2008:    20 goals – Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy)
  • 2007:    20 goals – Luciano Emilio (D.C. United)
  • 2006:    16 goals – Jeff Cunningham (Real Salt Lake)
  • 2005:    17 goals – Taylor Twellman (New England Revolution)
  • 2004:    12 goals – Eddie Johnson (Dallas Burn); Brian Ching (San Jose Earthquakes)
  • 2003:    15 goals – Carlos Ruiz (LA Galaxy); Taylor Twellman (New England Revolution)
  • 2002:    24 goals – Carlos Ruiz (LA Galaxy)
  • 2001:    19 goals – Alex Pineda Chacon (Miami Fusion)
  • 2000:    26 goals – Mamadou Diallo (Tampa Bay Mutiny)
  • 1999:    18 goals – Stern John (Columbus Crew); Roy Lassiter (D.C. United); Jason Kreis (Dallas Burn)
  • 1998:    26 goals – Stern John (Columbus Crew)
  • 1997:    16 goals – Jaime Moreno (D.C. United)
  • 1996:    27 goals – Roy Lassiter (Tampa Bay Mutiny)

 

Source: MLS

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