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Darmian has gone off the boil – Irwin

Former Manchester United defender Denis Irwin believes Matteo Darmian has gone off the boil after a good start to life at Old Trafford.

The Italy international quickly became a first-team regular at United following his transfer from Torino, but has lost his starting berth in recent weeks, with Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia often preferred at right-back.

"Darmian came in and started fantastically well, but I think when you are getting used to the Premier League you sometimes go off the boil," Irwin told the Manchester Evening News. 

"As Memphis Depay has as well, you go off the boil a little bit, but they'll come back stronger.

"Darmian's got competition because Ashley's done unbelievably well there. I don't know how Ashley sees himself, whether he's a winger or just glad to play, but he made one recovery tackle at [Crystal] Palace recently when he came on which was unbelievable and he has played very, very well. 

"But Valencia got injured and Darmian has had a rest, so you never know, it's down to the manager. Sometimes a break does you good. You see it's a different culture, a different climate, a different pace of football, so I'm sure Darmian will be in there challenging for a position again."

Darmian has made 16 appearances in all competitions for United this term.