Of all the footballers playing throughout world football, Salzburg forward Marc Janko can lay a strong claim to have had 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 number 21 amassing an incredible 39 goals in 33 games as 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 foot 5 inches high 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.