Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson hailed the bravery of matchwinner Cristiano Ronaldo after a 1-0 victory at Derby County took the Red Devils top of the Premier League table.
The Portuguese ace needed several chances to break the deadlock at Pride Park, but eventually did the business to boost United's title charge.
Ferguson said afterwards: "In the first 20 minutes we should have been four or five up and that would have made it much, much easier for us.
"You have to admire the second half from Derby. They made a real battle of it, but the name of the game is to win and we have to thank Ronaldo again.
"It was probably his hardest chance of the match because he had a lot of tremendous chances throughout the game.
"Everybody trusts him now and what you have to admire about the boy is that his courage is beyond question. I don't know how many fouls he has on him every game.
"People want to see footballers like him and I think we have to give him encouragement and we do that. We tell him to keep doing what he is good at, not to stop."