Fast forward: Neymar sprints at 34.7kph

Impressive data has emerged on the physical performance levels of Barcelona's latest star revealing the potent pace he possesses on the pitch
Neymar has been described as a "privileged player" by Santos physiologist Luis Fernando de Barros after some statistical data on Barcelona's new signing was released.

Neymar has been carefully managed by Fernando - as well as his counterpart Jose Luiz Runco in the Brazil national team - to ensure he is at peak physical condition despite his slight frame, and Fernando believes such attention is paying dividends for a player who is just 1.74 metres tall and 60 kilograms in weight.

"Neymar is pure fibre and genetics," he was quoted as saying by Mundo Deportivo. "He is a real privileged player."

Since 2009, the 21-year-old has played 277 games for both Santos and Brazil and has required close medical supervision to reduce the risk of injury following the physical demands of regular competition.

However, this has not stopped him developing into an explosive athlete - his top speed in a sprint in the recent Paulista game against Sao Paulo was recorded at 34.7 km/h.

In comparison, the fastest recorded top speed for a footballer in a major league was set by Cristiano Ronaldo in 2011 when he reached an astonishing 39.2km/h. Thierry Henry set the second fastest, a fraction slower at 39.2km/h, in 1998 and Arjen Robben clocked 37.8km/h 2012.

100m world record-holder Usain Bolt's record top speed for a human is around 44 km/h.

Based on these statistics, it is unsurprising that Tito Vilanova was quick to praise Neymar's versatility in attack.

"He’s a player who can play in different positions, not only on the left wing," the Blaugrana boss told reporters after the deal with Santos was agreed.

"He can also play behind the centre forward. We think he’ll adjust nicely, he’s a very talented player."

Neymar is currently with the Brazil squad preparing for Sunday's friendly with England at the Maracana.