Monday 5 December 2016

Irish star tops the list of the Premier League's fastest players

Published 10/10/2016 | 14:10

Republic of Ireland's Shane Long celebrates scoring his side's first goal Picture: PA
Republic of Ireland's Shane Long celebrates scoring his side's first goal Picture: PA

Having started the season with a prolonged goal drought, Shane Long will be delighted that he finally found the net in Ireland's 3-1 World Cup qualifier win over Moldova last night.

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The goal highlighted the striker's best attribute, with Long using his searing pace to get behind the defence and latch onto a beautiful Wes Hoolahan pass. On this occasion, the Southampton forward's finishing - which can let him down on occasion - was top notch and he rolled the ball into the corner.

Long regularly uses his speed to make often thankless runs into the corner to offer his team-mates an outlet high up the field, and new stats show just how quick the Ireland international is.

NBC Sports have created a list of the ten fastest players in the Premier League based on stats from Opta, who measured the highest speed reached by a player during any single game this season.

Amazingly, Long tops the list ahead of noted speedsters such as Hector Bellerin, Jamie Vardy and Theo Walcott.

Hopefully over the coming months Long can use his pace to break his Premier League duck for the season and find some goal-scoring form ahead of next month's crucial qualifier away to Austria.

Here is the complete top 10.

10. Hector Bellerin (Arsenal) – 34.77km/h

8 = Maya Yoshida (Southampton) – 34.78 km/h

8 = Theo Walcott (Arsenal) – 34.78 km/h

7. Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) – 34.79 km/h

6. Eric Bailly (Manchester United) – 34.84 km/h

5. Andre Gray (Burnley) – 34.87 km/h

4. Jamie Vardy (Leicester City) – 35.10 km/h

3. Kyle Walker (Tottenham) – 35.18 km/h

2. Lynden Gooch (Sunderland) – 35.19 km/h

1. Shane Long (Southampton) – 35.31 km/h

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