Messi co-favorite to win MLS scoring title despite 13-goal deficit
Lionel Messi has flat-out dominated the competition since making his Inter Miami debut on July 21 versus Cruz Azul in Leagues Cup play.
The Argentinian megastar, who has yet to make his MLS regular-season debut, has potted eight goals in five appearances for the Herons. As a result, oddsmakers made Messi the co-favorite to lead the league in scoring despite him facing a 13-goal deficit for the top spot.
MLS top goalscorer odds (regular season)
|Player||Odds||Total Goals||Games Remaining|
(Odds via theScore Bet)
Messi made his presence felt immediately with his new club, scoring in his first game on a free-kick in stoppage time to secure the win for Miami. And he hasn't stopped scoring since.
His eight goals led Inter Miami to five straight victories, and oddsmakers have seen more than enough to realize they under projected what the GOAT can do in MLS.
Messi's top goalscorer odds
|July 5 (opening)||+4000||2.4%|
|Aug. 14 (current)||+350||22.2%|
If Messi and Hany Mukhtar - the current league leader in goals - continue to score at their respective paces for the remainder of the regular season, Messi projects to end the campaign with 19.2 goals and Mukhtar with 18.4. That projection is using the assumption that Messi will continue his torrid pace of netting slightly over three goals every two games ... which sounds crazy to say out loud.
Leading the league in scoring isn't the only incomprehensible accomplishment oddsmakers believe - or fear - Messi is capable of with Miami this season. The Herons sit dead last in MLS with a 5-14-3 record for a measly 18 points. However, they have the third shortest odds of winning the MLS Cup.
Odds to win MLS Cup
|Saint Louis City SC||+1000|
Before the Messi-to-Miami rumors began to swirl in June, Miami's odds to win the league title were as long as +20000. Now, the club is down to +650 despite Messi not suiting up for a regular-season game yet.
Miami's odds to win MLS Cup
Even if Messi can't pull off the unthinkable - both winning the scoring title and leading his last-place team to an MLS Cup - his presence in the league has made every Inter Miami game must-see TV going forward.
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