Cape Town - Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho concedes that age is not allowing him to play Michael Carrick as often as he would like.
The 35-year-old midfielder was handed his first Premier League start of the season for the Red Devils on Sunday as they brushed aside Swansea 3-1 at the Liberty Stadium.
Carrick brought a balance to the United midfield and was the glue that bonded the team together, with the veteran England international coming in for praise from many quarters.
Mourinho was also impressed with his performance against the Swans, but insisted that Carrick is being used sparingly because of his age.
"I would love to play him every game but that is not possible," the Portuguese coach said in his post-match interview.
"Why? For the same reason that I cannot go to the gym every day anymore! He started today and he played very, very well."
Carrick is in his 11th season at Old Trafford, having joined from Tottenham in 2006, and made his 292nd appearance for United in the top flight at the weekend.
United have a tricky fixture when the Premiership returns after the international break against Arsenal on November 19.
Kick off is at 14:30.