Monday, September 3, 2007

Know Your club - Manchester United fc

Manchester United are the most successful Premier League club having won the title nine times. It all began in 1993 when manager Sir Alex Ferguson ended a 26-year wait to lift the Premier League crown.

The signing of Eric Cantona for £1.2million from Leeds proved a masterstroke as the Frenchman was instrumental in the title victory, along with the likes of Gary Pallister, Denis Irwin, Ryan Giggs and Paul Ince.

United retained the trophy in the following campaign and romped to further titles in 1994, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2003. More silverware was added to the Red Devils' burgeoning trophy cabinet with FA Cup success in 1994, 1996, 1999 and 2004, plus League Cup victories in 1992 and 2006.

Perhaps the most memorable time in the club's history was the treble-winning season of 1999 when they added the European Champions League trophy to the league title and FA Cup.

Chelsea briefly broke their league dominance with title wins in 2005 and 2006. But last season, the Red Devils roared back to regain the Barclays Premiership and won't give it up without a fight.

Club Heritage

Formed as Newton Heath L&YR F.C in 1878, the club changed its name to Manchester United in 1902. Six years later they clinched the Division One title, then the FA Cup in 1909, and another title triumph in 1911.

Matt Busby became manager in 1945 and steered United to championship victories in 1952, 1956 and 1957. They became the first English club to compete in the European Cup and reached the semi-final, before going out to Real Madrid. Tragedy struck in 1958 after when the plane carrying the team home from a European game crashed, killing eight players.

Busby survived and led his rebuilt team to an FA Cup win in 1963, then league titles in 1965 and 1967. United won the European Cup in 1968 with victory over Benfica in the final - the first English club to do so. When Busby resigned in 1969, his successors failed to continue his glorious triumphs and United were relegated five years later.

They managed to regain their top-flight status at the first attempt and later won the FA Cup in 1977. More FA Cup success followed in 1983 and 1985. But it was United's 1990 FA Cup replay win over Crystal Palace that proved to be the springboard to becoming the force they are today.

It saved under-pressure manager Alex Ferguson from losing his job and he went on to win the European Cup Winners' Cup the season after and began their Premier League dominance with the 1993 title.

Premier League History

1992-93 - Inaugural members of the Premier League
1991-92 - League Cup winners
1992-93 - Eric Cantona signs from Leeds for £1.2million
1992-93 - FA Carling Premiership winners
1993-94 - FA Carling Premiership winners and FA Cup winners
1995-96 - FA Carling Premiership winners and FA Cup winners
1996-97 - FA Carling Premiership winners
1998-99 - European Cup, Premiership and FA Cup winners
1999-00 - FA Carling Premiership winners
2000-01 - FA Carling Premiership winners
2001-02 - Juan Sebastian Veron smashes the British transfer record with a £28million move from Lazio
2002-03 - Barclaycard Premiership winners
2003-04 - FA Cup winners
2005-06 - American Malcolm Glazer takes control of club
2005-06 - League Cup winners
2006-07 - Barclays Premiership winners

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