Everton manager David Moyes praised his players in defeat after feeling they were unfortunate to lose to Manchester United at Goodison Park.
The home side made a fair fist of it against the champions but were unable to restore parity after Javier Hernandez had broken the deadlock in the first half.
Leighton Baines went closest as he rattled the bar with a fine free-kick but otherwise Everton struggled to conjure genuine chances, with Nemanja Vidic superb on his return from injury.
The Toffees have now lost five out of six games in all competitions but, especially after taking Chelsea to extra-time in the Carling Cup in midweek, Moyes was proud of their efforts.
He said: "I think we are unlucky not to get at least a point out of the game.
"We played well and Manchester United had few attempts, especially in the second half. I thought we looked the stronger side in the second half.
"Maybe it was just that bit of quality in the final third that we didn't have.
"We tried to find a way to get a goal but it wasn't to be.
"Great credit to the lads. We have gone toe to toe with Chelsea midweek, when we were unlucky not to go through, and done the same today."
Sylvain Distin, Phil Neville and Tim Cahill all missed the game through injury but could be back to face Newcastle next week.
Moyes said: "I think the three boys will have a chance for next week but we will know more in the week."