With Manchester United bringing in such high profile names like Bastian Schweinsteiger and Memphis Depay; Matteo Darmian was probably the most low profile signing. But he has outperformed all of the new boys.
Not only this but Darmian was definitely the most crucial signing, being United’s first decent right back since Gary Neville retired in 2011.
For the third game running, United’s defence was impenetrable, and kept a third Premier League clean sheet, for the third game in a row. The back four had to deal with the brute force of Aleksandar Mitrović and the pace of Obertan and Perez for most of the game. Then they also had to keep the fresh, pacey legs of Cisse and Thauvin. But the defence still kept the ball out of the net.
The Darmian, Smalling, Romero combo has looked world class this season and their defensive partners Blind and Shaw have also stepped up. Many were unsure of how Blind would cope as a centre back but he’s performed very well and Shaw has also had his good moments in defence.
As he’s done in United’s other fixtures, Darmian not only defended with great presence and strength, but he also attacked well, stringing together a lot of passes and surging into the opposition’s zone.
The Italian fall back finished the game with a 95% pass accuracy which is phenomenal.
United’s recent forward flops have been an issue as goals win games. However, it’s the defence that wins the league. Almost every Premier League winning side has had a solid defence backing it up, and United’s looks solid as a rock.
If the goals issue can be sorted out in this transfer window then United could real contenders for the Premier League title in the coming seasons.