Manchester United's new right-back impressed against Tottenham Hotspur.
The Italian was making his competitive debut for United and he looked like he had been there for years, putting in a display that suggested the club’s problems at right-back are well and truly behind them.
With Rafael barely featuring for van Gaal last season and Antonio Valencia playing in that position despite being more naturally suited to a role on the wing, it was always likely that United would splash the cash for a new right-back this summer.
So it proved, and Darmian has already shown that not only can he defend but he also loves getting forward, to good effect.
Speaking to the BBC after United’s 1-0 win against Tottenhan, van Gaal said, “The first time you play at Old Trafford it’s always difficult, but I liked the performances especially from Darmian.”
Considering Memphis Depay, Morgan Schneiderlin, Sergio Romero and Bastian Schweinsteiger also made their league debuts on Saturday, it is high praise indeed for the manager to single out Darmian. But United fans will no doubt agree after voting him their man-of-the-match.