Matteo Darmian, the 25 year old right back from Torino, is on the verge of signing for Manchester United for £12.9 million plus add-ons. Until the last week or so, Darmian was not a familiar name for many United fans – so what do we know about him?
Career to Date
He joined AC Milan at youth level and made his first team debut at the age of just 16 in the Coppa Italia. He made his Serie A debut aged 17 and left AC Milan in 2009 in search of first team opportunities. He moved to Padova in Serie B, making 20 appearances aged 19. In 2010 he moved to Palermo, where he was co-owned by Palermo and Milan. In 2011, he was loaned to Torino, who ultimately bought him for 1.5 million euros.
In 2013-14, he played 37 times, and in 2014 he made his 100th appearance for Torino. Last season, he made 47 appearances in all competitions, scoring 5 goals.
Darmian also has 13 caps for Italy – he made his international debut in a friendly against Ireland in 2014, and started all 3 games for Italy in the 2014 World Cup.
How Will Darmian Fare at Man Utd?
Now to the main question: Is he going to be a good signing? All the signs suggest he definitely will. He has got international experience and experience in Europe, having played in the Europa League with Torino. He is also only 25 years old, and already has over 130 appearances in Serie A.
How will he adapt to the Premier League? In reality, we’ll have to wait and see, but one thing is certain, he has all the attributes to suggest he can succeed at United. He can play on either side, has great awareness both in attack and defence, great stamina and pace, plus a reassuring injury record. He seems to have all the strengths associated with a “complete fullback”, which is exactly what the manager wants.
A fun fact for the stats-lovers: Darmian made more tackles per game (5.3) in 2012-2013 than any other player across the top 5 leagues in Europe.
[bctt tweet=”Darmian made more tackles/game (5.3) than anyone else in Europe’s top 5 leagues in 2012/13.”]
Van Gaal obviously believes this player can really strengthen us on the right side of the field, and there’s every reason for the fans to have faith too. Hopefully this out-of-nowhere signing will go down as an LVG masterstroke in due course.