The United squad celebrating a goal at Old Trafford.

Who was our fastest player against Chelsea?

Tuesday 13 August 2019 15:00

Manchester United's 4-0 win against Chelsea in Sunday's Premier League opener was an impressive team performance, full of intensity, commitment, and quick counter-attacking play.

One player in particular caught the eye in terms of sheer pace.

Daniel James, who came on as a 74th-minute substitute and rounded off the scoring seven minutes later, recorded the fastest top speed of anyone in a red shirt by clocking up a run that was measured at 33.51 km/h, according to Opta.

The 21-year-old registered six sprints in total during his 20 minutes on the pitch, including added time, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men took advantage of the Londoners' tiring legs late on.

The Welshman’s acceleration played a major part in allowing Paul Pogba to thread him through for his goal, and that pace has been a popular topic of conversation following his summer move from Swansea City.

Watch the goal from Daniel James that displayed his blistering pace on the counter attack.

Club legend and Wales manager Ryan Giggs, who was no slouch on the wing himself, called James a ‘speed merchant’ in June and potentially the fastest player he’d ever seen.

Although James, who has four caps for his national side, only featured briefly on Sunday, he showed what he was capable of during pre-season, starting five of our six matches before coming on as a substitute to slot home the winning penalty in the shootout against AC Milan in Cardiff.

The 21-year-old enjoyed a breakthrough season at the Liberty Stadium in 2018/19, making a name for himself with two spectacular Emirates FA Cup showings against Brentford and Manchester City.

The winger outpaced the entire Bees backline and ran from box to box in less than 10 seconds to score in the former, before terrorising Kyle Walker from a wide-left position against our local rivals in the quarter-final.

Anthony Martial managed United's second fastest top speed against Chelsea, coming in at 33.41 km/h, while left-back Luke Shaw was third with 33.36 km/h.

The Blues’ quickest player was also a substitute making his Premier League debut.

USA international Christian Pulisic, who was purchased from Borussia Dortmund in January and then loaned back out to the Germans, recorded a top speed of 33.18 km/h shortly after replacing Ross Barkley on 58 minutes.

Watch Anthony Martial's goal from the 4-0 win over Chelsea at Old Trafford.

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