What’s the story?
According to stats from La Liga, the fastest Real Madrid player this season has been central defender Nacho. The Spanish international has the highest speed of 34.63 kms per hour, more than the likes of Gareth Bale and Alvaro Morata who are just behind the Spaniard at 34.4 kms per hour.
Real Madrid as a team, has a lot of pace in the squad, the likes of Karim Benzema, Alvaro Morata, Marcelo and Dani Carvajal are all blessed with raw pace. Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale are considered to be the fastest players in the world, so it comes as a great surprise to the football fraternity that a centerback is the fastest player in the squad.
Nacho, who has finally got opportunities at Real Madrid this season, is not the type of player you would associate with pace, but as they say Statistics never lie.
It has apparently come as no surprise to the Real Madrid staff, that Nacho is the fastest among the Real Madrid players. The Spaniard has apparently kept hitting the numbers from pre-season, beating fellow defender Raphaël Varane and the duo of Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale.
The other surprising name in the list is Mateo Kovacic who hit the highest speed of 34.59 km/h. Gareth Bale and Alvaro Morata, as mentioned above, have the hit the highest speed of 34.4 km/h. Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, James Rodriguez and Isco are all below the 32 km/h barrier, something maybe opponents should look into while planning against the Madrid giants.
Parallels from history
The highest speeds clocked by players is a very interesting topic of discussion around football statisticians, given defenders often seem to be the ones clocking the fastest times during a game. Chris Smalling and Antonio Valencia also did exactly the same thing at Manchester United last season, when they were faster than the forwards in the team.
It is truly surprising stat, given the players Real Madrid have in their squad that Nacho is the fastest player. However, given he is 27 and has just over 100 appearances for the Los Blancos, this provides an insight into why he is a valuable player for the La Liga leaders.