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Published: 22:08 | 13/4/16

Carrick hails 'unbelievable' de Gea

Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick hailed David de Gea after the Spain goalkeeper produced another top-drawer performance in the FA Cup quarter-final win over West Ham United.

Marcus Rashford and Marouane Fellaini netted, as the 11-time holders beat Slaven Bilic's high-fliers 2-1 at Upton Park.

James Tomkins netted a 77th minute consolation, but the Hammers could have taken the tie into extra-time had de Gea not made two stunning blocks to deny Cheikhou Kouyate and Andy Carroll in the closing moments.

"[De Gea] has been unbelievable for us for so long now," Carrick told BBC Sport.

"We needed him at the end. The goal gave them incentive. We defended well at times but David stepped up.

"We have had some terrific results and some bad ones. That's something we have tried to put right. We need to be consistent and that's the challenge we have to set ourselves."

United will now meet Roberto Martinez's Everton in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley on Saturday, 23 April, looking for a first win at the new Wembley following their FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal in 2005 and semi-final defeats to Everton in 2009 and Manchester City in 2011.

"It is not important for me, it is important for the club, for the players and for the team," manager Louis van Gaal said.

"I said I wanted a title and I am very happy but it is very important for the club."

The Dutchman also hailed "important" de Gea, but felt his side let West Ham back into the game in the final 15 minutes.

"We played defensively very well. We didn't give so much away. They lost the ball a lot of times and I believe with a bit more composure we could have finished it much earlier," he said.

"I said at half-time we had to show composure in the third and fourth phase. We did that better but I still believe we could have finished the game earlier.

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