Raphael Varane vs Lionel Messi.

Raphael Varane destroyed Lionel Messi for pace at the age of 19 in 2013

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When EA Sports announced the top 20 fastest players on FIFA 18 earlier this month, football fans were disappointed to see that Raphael Varane once again hadn't made the cut.

Despite being a centre-back, Varane has demonstrated time and time again for Real Madrid that he's one of the world's fastest players.

For someone who stands at 6ft 3in, the Frenchman is absolutely rapid.

In last season's Champions League, for example, he completely outpaced Borussia Dortmund's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in a race for the ball.

Bear in mind that Aubameyang is supposedly the fastest player in the world with his 96 pace rating on FIFA.

But Varane made the Gabon international look slow, which makes his own pace rating of 79 on the latest edition of FIFA all the more laughable.

Even Gareth Bale has previously admitted that Varane is one of Real's fastest players, if not THE fastest.

The Welshman told in March: "Quickest player? Apart from me? Raphael [Varane] or [Cristiano] Ronaldo."


Varane's specialty is beating opposition players for pace and then producing a well-timed tackle to win back possession or stop an attack.

And that's exactly what he did against Lionel Messi in the 2013 Copa del Rey semi-final between Real and Barcelona at the Bernabeu, aged 19.

In the video below, Varane burns Messi for pace despite starting his run later to comfortably win possession. Check it out.


Christ. Messi was one of the world's fastest players at the time, yet Varane beat him to the ball with ease.

It was ultimately a sign of what to expect from the France international, who is now 24-years-old and a guaranteed starter for Zinedine Zidane's Real.

Varane was injured for the start of the 2017/18 season, but since recovering he's started each of Real's last four games.

The latest was against Aubameyang's Dortmund, who Los Blancos beat 3-1 away from home in the Champions League group stages.

Gareth Bale
Raphael Varane
La Liga

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