The new generation of Premier League defenders, fullbacks, midfielders, and of course strikers, are faster than we’ve ever seen.
Whether it’s the best right-backs or left-backs, from front to back, gone are the days where technicality on its own could thwart the opposition; here is an era where pace and trickery are the key to victory.
So, to pay homage, we’ve listed the top 10 fastest football players in the world, with all the key stats, information and data as the new football season get underway.
Racing into 10th place is…
10) Karim Bellarabi
Bringing up the rear in our top 10 fastest players in the world 2019 list is Bayer Leverkusen’s Bellarabi.
The German international has taken the Die Werkself midfield by storm this season and is a threat on the right-hand side thanks to his pace.
It’s from this position that Bellarabi is able to use his speed to provide crosses, as well as cutting into aim at goal, racking up nine goals and five assists in last year’s Bundesliga campaign.
Yet it’s on the counterattack that the 29-year-old is most efficient. Indeed, the same pace that allows him to tear down the flanks makes him equally dangerous when Leverkusen are breaking.
As one of the fastest players in the league, Bellarabi has clocked a top speed of 35.27 kilometres per hour, highlighting his deadly pace on the attack.
There are very few who can keep up with the German’s pace. Well, apart from the next nine in our list.
9) Kyle Walker
Surprisingly, one of the Premier League’s fastest players only wagers in at ninth place in our list – none other than Kyle Walker.
The Manchester City right-back rates in with a top speed of 35.27 kph, and has been a force to be reckoned with down the right flank.
Walker’s pace is especially important as it allows him to link up with the likes of Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero in the box once he’s reached the by-line.
As an important figure in Pep Guardiola’s plans for this season, having the Englishman contributing to the attack adds an extra dimension to the Man City counter – one that was pivotal to the Citizen’s retention of the domestic title last season.
8) Patrick van Aanholt
Leap-frogging Walker in the list is Crystal Palace’s Patrick van Aanholt.
The Dutch left-back has been a regular feature in the backline for the Eagles across the last few seasons. His pace and skill, especially in correlation with the dynamic Wilfried Zaha, elevate Palace’s attacking force.
It’s exactly this combination that coaxes the 28-year-old out of the deeper-lying role that Roy Hodgson has assigned to him, into the attacking third where his contributions allow Zaha to threaten in the opposition box.
The Dutchman’s pace is partly down to this attacking creativity as he reaches an average top speed of 35.4 kph throughout most seasons.
Considering that Van Aanholt’s usual duties don’t require him to meld in with the attack, these are particularly impressive stats.
7) Jamie Vardy
With a top speed of 35.44 kph, Vardy easily earns his place in our top 10 fastest football players in the world 2019 edition.
The Englishman has been a constant feature in this list ever since he made his name in Leicester City’s title-winning squad in 2016. At the age of 32, three years on, Vardy’s definitely still got it.
As a cunning striker who likes to press, harrow, and stifle any free-flowing football within the defence, there’s very little the forward won’t chase down. Part of Vardy’s effectiveness does lie in his speed, however, it’s his guile and spatial awareness that gets him onto goalscoring ways.
With the evidence that age is hardly affecting his speed, expect the Englishman to be just as deadly and detrimental on the counter this season as ever before.
6) Sadio Mane
Liverpool’s Sadio Mane is next up, having made his move from Southampton to Merseyside, turning from a local Saint to a cult-hero at Anfield in the space of a few seasons.
The Senegalese international started his career under Jurgen Klopp with a blistering performance against Arsenal that saw him score on his debut. It was clear from the get-go that pace and a prolific sense of scoring was Mane’s forte.
His 34.70 kph speed is a record that’s steadily improved year on year, making him the perfect partner in crime alongside Roberto Firmino and the equally-speedy Mohamed Salah.
5) Inaki Williams
Number six in the list of top 10 fastest football players in the world 2019 is one of La Liga’s young and upcoming talents – Inaki Williams.
As one of the quickest players currently playing across global leagues, it’s no surprise that the Spaniard has a place in our list.
The 25-year-old racked up 11 goals in 30 games last season with four assists to his name. Williams’ stats are partly down to being played as a central striker which is where he’s most effective for Athletico Bilbao.
Dribbling through the opposition defence, the 25-year-old is able to use his speed and accelerate through to goal. With a top speed of 35.71 kph, there are very few that can chase him down, even with a head start.
Should he make a move to England as rumours suggest, you’ll be able to read all about it on our Premier League transfer page.
4) Orlando Berrio
The Colombian may be the least well-known player on this list, but more so than others, he warrants a mention with a whopping top speed of 36kph.
As someone you would not want to challenge a foot-race to, the Flamengo player is able to beat his markers, even at such intense speeds, with a natural style of dribbling skilful enough to thwart opposition defenders.
Unfortunately, Berrio’s career has been riddled with injuries since he moved to the Brazilian team. He has had to sit out for long periods of the season, but when fully fit, is one of the fastest players in the world.
3) Kylian Mbappe
The French World Cup winner snaps up the bronze medal in our top 10 fastest football players in the world 2019.
On the field, Mbappe is a lethal finisher and damn-near unplayable on the counter. Possessing the ability to accelerate away from any markers, once the 20-year-old has put on the back-burners, even with a head-start, it’s impossible to keep up to speed.
And with 32 goals from 36 starts last season, it’s clear that the Frenchman has no intention of slowing down.
2) Gareth Bale
For all the controversy that has surrounded the ongoing saga between Gareth Bale, Zinedine Zidane and Real Madrid, there’s no denying that he is a world-class player.
From scoring an absolute worldie against Liverpool in Kyiv during last year’s Championship final to play a large part in winning Los Blancos the same competition in his inaugural season, Bale has done an honourable service for the Bernabeu faithful.
Despite his recent absence on the pitch, the Welshman has always had great ball control that has allowed him to reach breakneck speeds of up to 36.9kph without losing possession. What’s even more impressive is that Bale is able to do this consistently when played by Zidane, often providing for the likes of Karim Benzema and James Rodrigues in the box.
The 30-year-old may be in the midst of the most subdued period of his career. But there’s no doubt that he is still one of the fastest in the business.
The frontrunner in the race to lead our top 10 fastest football players in the world 2019 is neither Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, but Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben.
Indeed, even at the age of 35, the Dutchman is able to compete with some of the best in the industry at the highest level of professional football.
Whether it’s powering down the flanks or cutting in with infamous left foot of his, the Bayern attacker has been a pioneer of his era, and truly one of the most memorable performers in world football.
Wagering in as the fastest player in 2018, Robben had a lot more to contest with, including Mbappe, Nicolas Pepe, Jadon Sancho and more. Yet with a top speed of a phenomenal 37kph which no player has transgressed, he remains with that accolade in hand for the second year running.