First half goals from John O'Shea and Ruud van Nistelrooy planted the boys firmly on the back foot going into the break, but a spirited reply and a goal from Gus Poyet saw Manchester United playing out time as the final whistle neared.
"It is always difficult at 2-0 down because they are a very good passing team - Scholes and Giggs, in particular, were giving us problems," reflected David afterwards.
"I thought the team showed character in the second half, the way they passed the ball and tried to create chances showed a lot of strength. United are strong on the counter attack when you press them and I felt we held up well.
"Our goalkeeper had very few saves to make in the game, while I felt Howard did very well. We stood up and were counted today.
"Had we come off with a draw I don't think many people would have complained. We'll be alright looking at today. We'll get up that league - I'm sure we will. We've had a tough week."
David reported that Darren Anderton was forced off with a calf strain, while Stephane Dalmat was eventually replaced after feeling the pace of the game.
"Darren did well to play as he had a problem from the other night. Dalmat was looking to come off a little bit earlier so it was difficult for me. I wanted to keep him as he was a threat throughout, but he was feeling the pace of a fast game."
David Pleat praised the character of the team in the second half when 2-0 down to Manchester United and feels a draw would not have been an injustice.