Modern football is all about witty execution on the field. Different attributes are essential for any player to achieve glory in today’s world. Among such traits, a player’s speed along with crisp ball control remains one of the most sought-after characteristics by managers around the globe.
Along the years, we have seen many speedsters blazing down the wing and dribbling past defenders to score a stunner which reflects the beauty of the game and keeps the spectators glued to the match. In this article, we will have a look at the fastest players in the Premier League history.
Speaking of the toughness of a league, the Premier League arguably remains one of the most physical and challenging set-up to test a player’s potential. A league with 6-7 top teams need to have pacey players to edge past others in the cut-throat competition that prevails. Here’s an evaluation of the top 10 fastest players in the Premier League history:-
PS – This list is based on the consistency of top speed and not just the fastest sprint. For example – Phil Foden’s fastest sprint is recorded at 37.17 kmph, but that doesn’t mean he is faster than Walker or Sane. Same with Man Utd’s Fred, his top sprint speed of 37.27 doesn’t necessarily makes than fater than Rashford or James. No data of speed was available prior to 2013-14 season, so players before that were not considered.
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10. Patrick Van Aanholt
Crystal Palace star Van Aanholt is very much a stereotypical modern full-back, whose main strength is going forward as opposed to a left-backs more traditional job of defending.
He clocked up his top speed of 35.42km/h against Manchester United in September 2017. The 29-year-old’s pace and combination play with Eagles talisman Wilfried Zaha make the former Chelsea youth player one of the Premier League’s top attacking left fulls.
9. Daniel James
After lighting up the Championship with his consistent performances and not-to-mention vicious pace, Daniel James completed a reportedly £15 mil move to Manchester United last summer. A player known for his raw pace and quick decision-making skills, James made his senior team debut for Swansea City in 2016, having played for Hull City in the youth ranks.
Having clocked a top speed of 35.7 km/h, it comes as no surprise to why Ryan Giggs recently admitted that the 22-year old was the fastest played he had ever seen. James has slowly but steadily cemented his place in the starting lineup in the United team and the fans would be hoping him to achieve great things at the club.
8. Jamie Vardy
The main man behind Leicester’s title triumph in 2016, Vardy has hit the limelight with a bang in his later stages of his career. A naturally gifted pacey forward, Vardy became a household name after scoring in eleven consecutive matches for the Foxes in their title winning season.
A work horse and a fox-in-the-box striker with an eye only for goals, Vardy was Leicester’s quickest player that seasonby far, notching up top-speed of 35.44 km/h in 2015 against West Ham.
Still going strong at the age of 33, the ex-England international has proved to be the country’s one of the most lethal spearhead, flashing across defences and scoring stunners regularly.
7. Caglar Soyuncu
After Harry Maguire’s $97 mil move to Manchester United this summer, Soyuncu’s consistent performances would have hardly made Leicester City fans miss their former star man. Deputizing Johnny Evans in the center of the back four, Soyuncu’s sheer pace has earned the defender a place in the rankings.
The 23-year old Turkish international registered a top speed of 37.5 km/h this season, faster than teammate Jamie Vardy surprisingly.
The defender has been solid at the back this season, with only 28 goals scored against this season, three better than second-place Man City. Having moved from Frieberg in 2018, Soyuncu’s consistency and great ball-playing capabilities with of course gruesome pace, make him a hotshot in the coming transfer market.
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6. Allan Saint-Maximin
Having made his Ligue 1 debut for Saint-Etienne in 2013, the French international was sold to Monaco two seasons later. After spending short loan spells at Hannover 96 and Bastia, he made a permanent move to Nice in 2017 before joining Premier League side Newcastle in the summer of 2019.
Known for his tricks and lightning pace, Maximin became an instant fan favorite helping his side stay afloat in the league. The 23-year old clocked a high speed of 36.7 km/h this season and is one of Steve Bruce’s main men in the squad.
5. Kyle Walker
Pep Guardiola was wise enough to realise his vitality as a right back who can track back with ease given his explosive pace. Consistently remaining among the top full backs in the league along the years, Kyle has developed himself into a beast on the right flank.
Walker is an ever present in these kind of lists. He loves tearing apart opposition defences with ease when required and banging in crosses to help his team with an extra edge over rivals. Notching up a top speed of 36.85 kmph km/h once, he is one of the fastest players in the Premier League history.
4. Shane Long
The Irishman is proving that age is just a number when it comes to speed, out-running many opponents 10 years younger than him. Dubbed as ‘a powerful, no-nonsense striker’, Southampton forward Shane Long record sprint in the league, is 37.33 kmph against Newcastle in 2019.
Long has consistently been one of the fastest player during his time in the Premier League era. He has, many times, registered top speed of over 35kmph, that makes him one of the fastest players in the Premier League history.
The 30-year old Irish international has over 75 national caps under his name and has spent his club career in a host of teams including Reading, West Bromwich Albion and Hull City. Though he is not getting younger in the years to come, Long will still remain one of the fastest players in the Premier League history.
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3. Leroy Sane
The 23-year old German international is enjoying his prime spell at Manchester City this season, displaying brilliant runs and majestic ball-play in the limited chances he has been given. Very few people knew who he was before City broke their banks upon Guardiola’s arrival in a £37 million deal with FC Schalke 04 for the young winger.
Clocking a top speed of 35.48 km/h in a game against Chelsea on 30th Sept 2017, Sane is a real threat to defenders in the League and has been growing into a more lethal product under Guardiola. One of his highlights at City was when he outpaced one of the quickest of the league, Hector Bellerin to score a splendid goal for the Blues. Since then, there is no turning back for Sane as he continues to torment opposition defences with his sheer pace.
2. Marcus Rashford
United’s number 10 has been in the fastest player’s debate ever since his debut against Midtjylland in which he scored two goals. After the transfer of Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan last summer, Rashford has been United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s main man up front. The 22-year old English striker has 14 goals and 5 assists in the league this season and is on course to be the club’s player of the year.
Rashford hit 36.32 km/h against Crystal Palace this season and is the club’s fastest player, slightly better than his attacking partner James. Rashford has become a vital part of the United front-line as Solskjaer’s style of counter-attacking football perfectly suits his forte.
1. Adama Traore
A product of the famed La Masia, Traore made only one professional appearance for FC Barcelona before being sold to Aston Villa in 2015. After spells in Villa and Middlesbrough, Traore was bought by Wolverhampton Wanderers where his true talent came to the spotlight.
A lethal deploy at the wings, Traore is having a stellar 19-20 season under Nuno Espirito Santo as the Spanish attacker raked up 4 goals and 7 assists this season including MOTM performances against defending champions Man City twice as Nuno, then became only the second manager to do a league double over Guardiola.
A player with blistering pace and strong physic, Traore clocked the highest speed of 37.9 km/h in the league this season and is also rumored to be persuaded by various European clubs such as Man City, Bayern Munich and Liverpool.