Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho hailed his side's attitude and determination as they kept their top-four ambitions on track with victory at Middlesbrough.
Marouane Fellaini headed the visitors in front on the half-hour mark after former United goalkeeper Victor Valdes had earlier brilliantly denied Marcus Rashford on two occasions.
Jesse Lingard fired in a second for the Red Devils with a powerful drive into the top corner after 62 minutes before Boro substitute Rudy Gestede snatched one back with the hosts' first goal in five Premier League matches.
Antonio Valencia capitalised on a mistake from Valdes to net United's third goal late on, sealing a victory which left Mourinho delighted.
(I applaud) Our attitude and desire and our way of thinking. We don't have plan B, C, D, E, F and G - but we have M, N, O, P and S.
It is fantastic because we manage in the same week, to go to the quarter-finals of the Europa League which is an important target for us.
At the same time, we got these three points that keep us in the race for the fourth position so we still have two doors for Champions League football next season.
These guys gave everything, we started the game really well, Valdes made three fantastic saves before our first goal. We controlled everything until our second goal.
Jose Mourinho has conceded that Manchester United are not ready to compete on all fronts yet, and has admitted he would never have sold three players allowed to depart before he took over, nor given the go ahead for some of the club's signings.
United have lost their place as the dominant force in English football since Sir Alex Ferguson called time on his glory-laden reign in 2013.
The Old Trafford giants turned to Mourinho after frustrating spells under David Moyes and Louis van Gaal - a period when United flashed the cash without much success.
The Portuguese boss, speaking to BBC Sport, says he would never have moved for some of those brought in, with some of those exiting United puzzling him.
Manchester United sold players that I would never sell and bought players that I would never buy.
I would never have sold [Angel] Di Maria, Chicharito, Danny Welbeck - never, no chance.
We are not ready to be Manchester United.
We are not ready to be a dominant force. We are not ready to try and win everything.
Because of the nature of the club, and of myself, we are ready to fight for every game, every point.
But there is a space between the general ambition of such a giant club and what we are in reality.
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