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John Akinde did not make the grade at Tottenham as a kid and he appeared for a dozen teams before transferring to Barnet but he has been a revelation for the Bees during the last three seasons and he is a worthy favourite to finish the English League Two competition as its top goal scorer.
Akinde leads the English League Two Golden Boot race on 21 goals, one more than Doncaster striker John Marquis. Matt Godden of Stevenage is a legitimate English League Two Golden Boot contender on 19 goals but Omar Bogle joined English Championship struggler Wigan after reaching that mark for Grimsby. Luton attacker Danny Hylton is next in line on 17 English League Two goals and some bookmakers are not quoting beyond Crawley star James Collins, also on 17.
Barnet, Doncaster, Stevenage and Crawley have each played 35 English League Two matches, while Luton has one more game up its sleeve. The English League Two Golden Boot race takes place over the 46-round regular season so most of the teams have 11 matches before the play-off series kicks off.
One would argue that Barnet has the second softest schedule between now and the end of the English League Two regular season. The current points-per-game average of Barnet’s 11 remaining opponents, taking into account whether the Bees will host or visit them, works out at 1.19. Barnet is yet to entertain Crawley, Yeovil, Cheltenham, Luton, Wycombe and Grimsby, while the Bees have still not travelled to Notts County, Stevenage, Exeter, Hartlepool and Crewe. According to points-per-game averages, Morecambe has English League Two’s easiest run home (1.16), while selected other sides include Crawley (1.27), Doncaster (1.45), Luton (1.47) and Stevenage (1.50). For the record, Mansfield (1.72) has the most challenging English League Two fixture list to go.
Akinde is English League Two’s most dominant goal scorer insomuch that he has contributed 49 per cent of Barnet’s divisional strikes. Furthermore, Akinde has scored more penalty kicks than anyone else in English League Two having converted six times from 12 yards. Marquis, Godden, Hylton and Collins have each scored from the spot in English League Two but just Godden and Collins lead their respective sides.
Now is the time to take a punt on Akinde winning the English League Two Golden Boot two years after he earned the English National League equivalent. Barnet’s next four English League Two matches are against 16th-ranked Crawley, 17th-ranked Yeovil, 22nd-ranked Notts County and 18th-ranked Cheltenham and three of them are programmed for The Hive. Bet365 is quoting odds of 11/10 2.10 +110 1.10 1.10 -0.91 about Akinde collecting one of English League Two’s premier individual honours and perhaps the biggest risk to him is a suspension. Akinde has collected nine cautions so, according to English League Two rules, he would earn a ban if he was to pick up his 10th yellow card before the second Sunday in March. Barnet will line up versus Crawley on the second Saturday in March so Akinde punters will be hoping that he stays out of trouble.
If you were interested in having an English League Two Golden Boot stake saver then Godden is the most attractive option at odds of 4/1 5.00 +400 4.00 4.00 -0.25 with several bookmakers, including BetVictor, Paddy Power and SkyBet. Godden is not in foul trouble and he is English League Two’s form forward but Stevenage does have a relatively tough program to come.
John Akinde to win the League Two Golden Boot
Odds: 11/10 2.10 +110 1.10 1.10 -0.91
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