All eyes will soon be cast towards Russia for the biggest sporting event of the year, as the 2018 World Cup finally kicks off this summer.
There are a host of world class nations set to challenge for the greatest honour in international football, with the likes of reigning champions Germany, the always dangerous Brazil and former conquerors Spain.
Two other countries hoping to enjoy a successful trip to Russia are Argentina and Portugal, with these two nations boasting undoubtedly the two best and most influential players currently in the sport, and perhaps of all time.
Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo will once again lead his Portugal side out on Russian soil as captain, while Barcelona icon Lionel Messi will skipper another star-studded Argentina roster this summer.
Both goalscoring sensations will be confident of earning progression deep into the tournament, with Portugal having rallied to an impressive Euro 2016 victory in France two years ago, while Argentina reached the 2016 World Cup final in Brazil.
But which all-time great will dispatch more goals during their respective campaigns at the 2018 World Cup?
Portugal captain Ronaldo is seen as a 12/1 outsider to go on and claim the Golden Boot at the tournament this year, as he enters proceedings on the back of yet another sensational scoring season for Real Madrid domestically and in Europe.
Although, it’s Argentine ace Messi that will take to the World Cup as the favourite for the top scorer award. The little genius can be backed at a promising 9/1 with Paddy Power to secure the Golden Boot on Russian territory, after helping Barcelona claim La Liga during his club duties throughout the 2017/18 term.
Both of these incredible goalscorers took to the World Cup for the very first time back during the 2006 event in Germany, while they have also went on to feature at the 2010 competition in South Africa and most recently Brazil 2014.
At his first World Cup outing 12 years ago, Ronaldo netted just once and provided no assists but was able to be part of a talented Portugal roster that managed to rally to a fourth-place finish. The Los Blancos goal-getter therefore featured in six games at the tournament.
Meanwhile, Messi was only able to get on the scoresheet on one occasions as well in Germany, but made one assist, as he made just three appearances at the event.
Fast forward to South Africa in 2010 and Ronaldo enjoyed a better campaign personally with a goal and an assist, compared to Messi’s goalless competition and single assist. Although, the latter Argentine featured in one more game, as his nation were thrashed by Germany in the quart-finals.
Next up was a trip to Brazil and it was Messi who enjoyed a much better World Cup campaign. The Barcelona attacker was pivotal in his country reaching the final, in which they were ultimately toppled in extra-time by Germany.
But the little maestro was able to net four goals and notch up one assist, with his contributions seeing him be crowned as the tournament’s best player. Meanwhile, Ronaldo endured a rather disappointing and frustrating campaign with Portugal, as they surprisingly crashed out in the group stage, with the United States and eventual champions Germany progressing ahead of them.
Personally, Ronaldo did manage to get on the scoresheet once and set a teammate up for a single assist.
On the back of equally incredible personal seasons for their Spanish clubs, all eyes will be on who can guide their nation the furthest and which superstar player can outscore the other.