Given how so many players were alongside each other for the first time in a competitive game, they were rusty at points but overall did enough to earn the three points which is what matters.
Speaking about the players after the game, Smalling said: “I think Sergio looked the part, he came out and commanded his box which is what you want behind you as a defender because, when you’ve got a goalkeeper who comes out with that presence, it mops up a lot of the danger.
“I think the new signings all slotted in effortlessly and their performances were very good. Darmian at right-back was terrific as well.
“It was good that they all had the majority of pre-season, apart from Sergio, to gel with our players and I think it showed.”
The former, in spite of making just 11 club appearances last season, grew in stature as the game went on and made some decisive stops as Spurs mounted some late pressure.
As for Darmian, the Italian was an imperious force throughout and looks like a wonderfully shrewd bit of business Van Gaal.
However, United fans will hope that this performance, albeit a stellar one, doesn’t act as an accurate precursor for the remainder of the season.
As the Premier League slowly picks up its pace in the coming weeks, Van Gaal will need to instil more attacking zip into his lineup after a mediocre attacking display on the opening weekend.