Wayne Rooney clocks faster speed than Angel di Maria

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Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney led by example during Sunday's 4-0 win over Queens Park Rangers and clocked a faster speed than any of his teammates, including summer signings Angel di Maria and Radamel Falcao.

The England international proved that he is currently in top physical condition after recording a top speed of 20.3mph against Harry Redknapp's side. That was 0.2mph quicker than £59.7 million summer signing Di Maria, who produced a Man of the Match performance on his home debut.

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Rooney and Di Maria out in front

These statistics come courtesy of Opta - brought to our attention by the Daily Mail - and also show that Antonio Valencia and Jonny Evans were only marginally slower than Rooney, recording top speeds of 20mph exactly.

Falcao only managed to record a top speed of 17.9mph - the third-slowest in United's squad - but it should be taken into account that the Colombia international was a second-half substitute and had little space to operate in. Furthermore, he is working his way back to full fitness.

David de Gea, unsurprisingly, recorded the slowest speed: 14.9mph which, for a goalkeeper, is certainly reasonable. However, this was almost certainly the moment when the Spain international rushed out of his area and almost cost his side a goal.

Encouragement for Louis van Gaal

Louis van Gaal will be particularly encouraged by the fact that three of Manchester United's summer signings covered the most ground during the match at Old Trafford.

Ander Herrera, who scored United's second goal, topped the list after covering an impressive 7.6 miles over the course of the match.

Daley Blind was next in line with 7.4 miles covered, followed by left-back Marcos Rojo, who covered 7.1 miles.

Di Maria, meanwhile, covered a more modest 5.8 miles. The Argentina international, though, still produced a performance that United fans will talk about for years to come.

Van Gaal's looming selection headache

The former Real Madrid star will be one of the first names on Van Gaal's team-sheet over the coming months, but the United boss faces a selection headache over who to select upfront.

Robin van Persie produced yet another disappointing performance against QPR - the Dutch striker clocked a top speed of 19.2mph and covered 6.7 miles - and could be dropped for next Sunday's Premier League match against Leicester City.

Falcao could be handed his first start, alongside Rooney, with Juan Mata playing just behind in the playmaker role.

In the win over QPR, Mata scored his eighth goal in his last ten Premier League appearances and is unlikely to be benched for this weekend's visit to the King Power Stadium.

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Robin Van Persie
Wayne Rooney
Manchester United
Premier League

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