Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson paid tribute to veteran goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar following the FA Cup quarter-final victory over Arsenal.
Goals from Fabio and Wayne Rooney
gave United a 2-0 win over their nearest challengers in the Barclays Premier League title race, but the former Holland international stopper also played a key role.
Van der Sar, who is set to retire at the end of the season, made a string of excellent saves at crucial times to keep the visitors at bay.
"He is a fantastic goalkeeper," Ferguson said. "We just wish he was 21 rather than coming up to 41 but nature catches you eventually in life."
United now head into their own Champions League last-16 encounter with Marseille on Tuesday, with both Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes expected to start after being limited to substitute roles.
"I couldn't risk Scholes and Giggs because of Tuesday's game," Ferguson added. "That is such an important game for the club and if you look at the injuries in midfield I had to come up with a plan or an idea to utilise our energy."