United Reserves coach Warren Joyce has expressed his admiration for the three first-teamers involved at Crewe Alexandra on Monday and revealed Nemanja Vidic was always scheduled to be substituted.
The Serbian centre-back played alongside skipper Tom Thorpe in the 2-0 victory and was withdrawn after slightly more than an hour with midfielder Ben Pearson taking his place. Nani was also taken off, following his matchwinning two-goal display, but Antonio Valencia featured for the full 90 minutes.
"I think all three of them worked well," Joyce told MUTV. "While the other boys have been away, they've worked through it and done everything with the younger players.
"They are good examples of how to do things right and I thought all three acquitted themselves very well.
"We've not been careful with Vida really, we've just done what we had to do and put him in situations where he's had to defend under stress in training. I thought he was comfortable out there and we'd planned just to play him that long so, touch wood, he is okay.
"The first-team players started here to work on their fitness and build a level and we're just hoping to get them back to the level where they can join in and be around about the same as the other players and continue in the first-team games."