Friday 26 May 2017

Shane Long tops an improbable set of statistics... with Man United rock bottom of an alternative Premier League table

Southampton's Shane Long looks dejected after missing a chance to score
Southampton's Shane Long looks dejected after missing a chance to score
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Ireland and Southampton striker Shane Long has been recorded as the fastest player in the Premier League so far this season, with Manchester United revealed to have covered less ground than any other team in English football’s top flight.

In statistics published by Sky Sports, Long’s burst of pace in a game against Watford back in August was recorded at 35.31km/h, which is the speediest in the Premier League so far this season.

Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford is the runner-up in that poll, after recording a time of 35.21km/h, yet his team come bottom of a table that may be a little more significant for their manager Jose Mourinho.

United have covered less ground than any other team in the Premier League this season, which may go some way to explaining why they have failed to unsettle opponents as they have drawn nine games at their Old Trafford home this season.

United’s impressive 2-0 victory against Chelsea last Sunday was noted as their most impressive performance of the season to date, with their passionate display upsetting the Premier League title favourites as Mourinho’s side eased to a relatively comfortable victory.

Yet the statistics confirming United are rock bottom of the table when it comes to distance covered in Premier League matches this season comes as something of a surprise and may highlight a lack of mobility in Mourinho’s line-up, as they battle to secure a top four finish in the Premier League.

Jurgen Klopp’s high pressing Liverpool team top the table as their players have covered an average of 116.9km per game this season, with Manchester City sitting in second spot with a figure of 115km per game.

While many statistics count for little when the trophies are handed out at the end of each season, these figures may suggest that Mourinho needs to add some additional energy into his side as he prepares to attack the transfer market once again this summer.

DISTANCE COVERED BY PREMIER LEAGUE TEAMS THIS SEASON

Liverpool                    116.9

Manchester City        115.0

West Brom                 114.4

Tottenham                  114.1

Burnley                        113.7

Middlesbrough          113.4

Bournemouth            113.4

Chelsea                        113.1

Swansea City              111.9

Hull City                      111.6

Arsenal                        110.7

West Ham                   109.5

Everton                       109.2

Southampton             109.0

Stoke City                   108.7

Leicester City             108.6

Watford                       107.8

Sunderland                 107.2

Crystal Palace             106.6

Manchester United    106.1

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