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Joe Garner v Andy Williams: The race for Sky Bet League 1’s golden boot

27 March 2015

On 2nd May, the sporting world will be glued to events in Las Vegas as Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao do battle at the MGM Grand in ‘The Fight of the Century’.

The next day, another big battle is likely to be taking place when the Sky Bet League 1 season concludes; the fight for the division’s golden boot.

In the red corner: Swindon Town’s Andy Williams.

In the white corner:Preston North End’s Joe Garner.

The pair are currently tied on 20 goals apiece as they spar for the title of undisputed top-scorer in Sky Bet League 1 2014/15.

For 28-year-old Williams, this already represents his best ever goal-scoring campaign, while 26-year-old Garner is continuing where he left off last season, when he bagged 24 in all competitions.  

This time around, Garner has quickly caught up in recent weeks, with Swindon’s Williams only netting twice since 17th January. In that time, his Preston counterpart has found the back of the net on nine occasions, including seven in his past six outings, helped by a quadruple against Crewe Alexandra.

Overall, Williams’ 20 goals have arrived in 37 games, much more than the same total in only 28 matches for Garner, who was absent for three-and-a-half months due to a knee injury.

However, take the minutes-per-goal ratio into account and the stats are much closer.

Williams has scored on average every 126 minutes during the 2014/15 Sky Bet League 1 campaign, while Garner’s record is better by nine minutes, netting once per 117 minutes of action.

It’s not strictly a two-horse race, though. Rochdale’s Ian Henderson is third (18 goals), while Matt Done, who left Dale midway through the season to join Sheffield United, is tied in fourth with Crawley Town’s Izale McLeod (16 goals).

It looks set to go down to the wire, just like in 2013/14, when Bristol City’s Sam Baldock pipped Peterborough United’s Britt Assombalonga to the accolade by one, solitary goal.

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