Alternative contenders for the EPL 2017/18 golden boot

As a general rule, the much coveted English Premier League Golden Boot Award is won by a striker, usually from one of the biggest sides in the competition.

Spurs' Harry Kane has claimed the honour for the last two seasons, and will be vying to equal the record set by Premier League greats Alan Shearer and Thierry Henry, who both managed to scoop the award for three seasons on the bounce.

Jermain Defoe

The mini-maestro has been the bane of Premier League defenders for the best part of two decades, racking up 158 goals in the competition. Now back at Bournemouth, the club at which he netted 29 goals in 18 matches to massively boost his reputation, Defoe is ready to work the magic yet again.

During his last two seasons with now-relegated Sunderland, Defoe single handedly kept the team's head above water with his performances - repeatedly taking the bull by the horns and salvaging precious points against all odds.

Chicharito

The former Manchester United man is back in the Premier League and ready for another bite at the cherry with last season's major under-performers West Ham United.

During his three year sojourn away from the Premier League, Javier Hernandez enhanced his reputation as a formidable poacher, scoring 39 goals in 76 appearances for Real Madrid and Bayern Leverkusen.

The 'little pea' was never given much of a chance to lead the line during his days at Old Trafford, and will have a point to prove upon his return to the English top-flight.

Marcus Rashford

You really had to feel for United starlet Marcus Rashford last season, who's rapid ascent from youth player to England international was slowed down by the arrival of a certain top-knotted Swede.

Rather than lead the line, Rashford was forced into a wide role, but still managed to net 11 goals in all competitions during the campaign. With Zlatan Ibrahimovi? off the books at United, Rashford will have the slightly less daunting task of competing with new signing Romelu Lukaku for a starting spot up-top for the Red Devils.

While Lukaku is of course a proven and quality striker, Rashford stands a chance of starting more games as a front-man than he did during Zlatan's time at United, and is certain to seize his chance when it arrives.

Wayne Rooney

Rooney ran the risk of finishing his career with a whimper at Manchester United, after slowly being phased out of the starting XI by his manager José Mourinho.

The former England captain's return to his boyhood club is a fairy-tale way to finish his career, and what better way to ensure a dream happy ending than capping it all off with a Golden Boot-winning campaign?

Likely to start as a striker for the Toffees, Rooney returns as a veritable veteran to the club he shone for in his youth. With 198 Premier League goals to his name, would it really be so astonishing for the all-time England top scorer to bag the boot this season?

Kevin De Bruyne

Only one non-striker has won the Golden Boot in the Premier League era: Cristiano Ronaldo.

Now the Manchester City man is clearly not up to the standards of the Portuguese superstar, but he has shown a similar ability to find himself in a goal scoring positions as a midfielder.

It is believed that the Belgian attacker will be given a lot more freedom by boss Pep Guardiola to roam forward this season, and De Bruyne's natural eye for goal could see him gobble up a host of chances for the Citizens.