Of all the footballers playing throughout the world, Salzburg forward Marc Janko can lay a strong claim to having the most remarkable 12 months of the lot.
Until the start of the 2008/09 season, Janko was just another striker floating around the continent who could easily be overlooked, as he played his football in the unfashionable Austrian T-Mobile Bundesliga. But, like something out of a comic book, once last season began no other centre-forward could match Janko for his goal-scoring prowess. With the giant No. 21 amassing an incredible 39 goals in 33 games, he led Salzburg to the championship.
The awards where quick in following; Janko scooped the Austrian Bundesliga Player of the Year for 2008/09 as well as coming runner-up to Diego Forlan in the race for the European Golden Shoe award, despite the Austrian-based striker having scored more de facto goals in the season.
It is unclear whether Janko, a 25-year-old totem pole standing 6'5" who suddenly appears blessed with the midas touch for goalscoring, is just a one-season wonder or the real deal. But what seems more likely than ever is that Janko will receive the chance to prove himself at a higher level, with Tottenham, Blackburn, and Celtic all rumoured to be sniffing around the striker this summer.
All of Marc Janko’s 39 goals scored during the 2008/09 season can be seen here.