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Manchester United Team Profile – Club History, Players, Managers & More

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This is our complete guide to Manchester United. In this article you can discover exactly what trophies the club have won, along with information on their history, players, managers, stadium, rivalries and much more. Read on to become an expert in the club and make sure you check in on SportsLens regularly for all the Manchester United news.

Manchester United Logo & History

Manchester United logo

The club was formed in 1878 under the original name of Newton Heath LYR Football Club by the Carriage and Wagon department of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway depot at Newton Heath. In the early days they played matches against other railway departments and companies, until 1880 when they played their first recorded game against the reserves of Bolton Wanderers, losing 6-0.

By 1888 the club had become a founding member of a regional football league called The Combination, they then joined the Football Alliance a year later, which ran for three seasons before merging with the Football League. The club remained known as Newton Heath until 1902, when it ran into financial trouble and the new investors that saved the club, decided to change the name to Manchester United.

It was the Manchester City Council coat of arms that inspired the original Manchester United badge, though the only element that remains today is the sailing ship. The devil on the logo came from the club’s nickname ‘The Red Devils’. A devil began to appear on programmes and scarves in the 1960s and was incorporated into the badge in 1971.

The dawn of a new era in the early 1990s saw Man Utd become the most dominant of Premier League teams in the breakaway competition’s early years. They remain the most successful side of modern times with 13 of their 20 league titles coming since 1992.

Manchester United Kit

During the Newton Heath days the club club wore green and gold shirts, amongst various other colours and designs. Green and gold was reintroduced as Manchester United away kit colours between 1992 and 1994, while the colours have also become a symbol for the fans in their protests against their American owners the Glazer family.

When the club changed their name in 1902, the team colours also changed to a red Manchester United jersey, white shorts and black socks. These have remained the classic club home colours, though there have been occasions when black shorts or white socks have been used, while there was also a brief period when the club wore red and white hooped shirts.

The traditional away kit has been a white Manchester United shirt, with black shorts and white socks, though there have been some exceptions. For their third kit Manchester United normally have a blue shirt, but again, there have been experiments with different colours.

Club Honours

  • Premier League / English Football Championship – 20 times: 1907–08, 1910–11, 1951–52, 1955–56, 1956–57, 1964–65, 1966–67, 1992–93, 1993–94, 1995–96, 1996–97, 1998–99, 1999–2000, 2000–01, 2002–03, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2012–13
  • Championship / Second Division – 2 times: 1935-36, 1974-75
  • FA Cup12 times: 1908–09, 1947–48, 1962–63, 1976–77, 1982–83, 1984–85, 1989–90, 1993–94, 1995–96, 1998–99, 2003–04, 2015–16
  • EFL Cup / League Cup – 5 times: 1991-92, 2005-06, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2016-17
  • FA Community Shield / FA Charity Shield – 21 times: 1908, 1911, 1952, 1956, 1957, 1965*, 1967*, 1977*, 1983, 1990*, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016 (*shared)
  • UEFA Champions League / European Cup – 3 times: 1967-68, 1998-99, 2007-08
  • European Cup Winners’ Cup – once: 1990-91
  • UEFA Europa League / UEFA Cup – once: 2016-17
  • UEFA Super Cup / European Super Cup – 1 time: 1991
  • Intercontinental Cup – once: 1999
  • FIFA Club World Cuponce: 2008

Manchester United have been crowned as champions of England more often than any other club. Five of these titles were won under the management of Matt Busby, while 13 were won under Alex Ferguson. They also have a dozen FA Cup wins, half of which came with Fergie in charge.

Busby’s team became the first English club to become champions of Europe in 1968, which was a feat that Ferguson emulated in 1999 and 2008. On both of those latter two occasions, Manchester United FC took the opportunity to become world champions, also

Latest Man Utd Odds & Betting

If you fancy a bet on the current Manchester United team winning silverware this season, then you’ll want the top Premier League betting sites and best odds. Here are the biggest prices available for Manchester United to win the various competitions that they’re involved in this season.

Competition Best Man Utd Odds Bookmaker
Premier League 28/1 SBK logo
FA Cup 10/1 888Sport logo
EFL Cup 14/1 Bet365 logo
Europa League 15/2 logo betway

Manchester United Squad

Manchester United F.C. have had some of the world’s greatest ever players in their squads over the years. In this section we’re going to remember some of those Manchester United legends and also profile the current squad options.

Manchester United Goalkeeper Options

Some of the former goalkeepers to have graced Old Trafford include Harry Gregg, Alex Stepney, Gary Bailey, Peter Schmeichel, Fabien Barthez and Edwin van der Sar. Here are the current crop of shot-stoppers.

  • 1. David de Gea (Spain)
  • 22. Tom Heaton (England)
  • 31. Martin Dubravka (Slovakia)

Man Utd Defenders

There have been some great defenders in the Manchester United line up over the years. These include Noel Cantwell, Bill Foulkes, Tommy Dunne, Martin Buchan, Paul McGrath, Steve Bruce, Gary Pallister, Denis Irwin, Gary Neville, Jaap Stam, Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra and Nemanja Vidic. Here are the present defensive options.

  • 2. Victor Lindelof (Sweden)
  • 4. Phil Jones (England)
  • 5. Harry Maguire (England)
  • 6. Lisandro Martinez (Argentina)
  • 12. Tyrell Malacia (Netherlands)
  • 19. Raphael Varane (France)
  • 20. Diogo Dalot (Portugal)
  • 23. Luke Shaw (England)
  • 29. Aaron Wan-Bissaka (England)
  • 33. Brandon Williams (England)
  • 38. Axel Tuanzebe (England)
  • 43. Teden Mengi (England)

Manchester United Midfielders

Manchester United have had some magnificent talents in the middle of the park. Examples include Duncan Edwards, Nobby Stiles, Pat Crerand, Sammy McIlroy, Steve Coppell, legendary Manchester United captain Bryan Robson, Paul Ince, Ryan Giggs, Roy Keane, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick. These are the current midfielders at the club.

  • 8. Bruno Fernandes (Portugal)
  • 14. Christian Eriksen (Denmark)
  • 17. Fred (Brazil)
  • 18. Casemiro (Brazil)
  • 28. Facundo Pellistri (Uruguay)
  • 34. Donny van de Beek (Netherlands)
  • 39. Scott McTominay (Scotland)

Manchester United Strikers

Amongst the attacking talent that have spread feat amongst Manchester United’s opponents are Tommy Taylor, Bobby Charlton, Denis Law, George Best, Lou Macari, Norman Whiteside, Mark Hughes, Eric Cantona, Andy Cole, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Wayne Rooney. The present roster of wingers and forwards are listed below.

  • 7. Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
  • 9. Anthony Martial (France)
  • 10. Marcus Rashford (England)
  • 11. Mason Greenwood (England)
  • 21. Antony (Brazil)
  • 25. Jadon Sancho (England)
  • 36. Anthony Elanga (Sweden)
  • 47. Shola Shoretire (England)
  • 49. Alejandro Garnacho (Argentina)

Manchester United Players with Most Appearances

Manchester United football club have had some incredibly long serving players. These are the footballers that have played the most Manchester United games.

Rank Player Name Years League Games FA Cup Games League Cup Appearances European Games Other Matches Total
1 Ryan Giggs 1991-2014 672 74 41 157 19 963
2 Bobby Charlton 1956-1973 606 78 24 45 5 758
3 Paul Scholes 1994-2011, 2012-2013 499 49 21 134 15 718
4 Bill Foulkes 1952-1970 566 61 3 52 6 688
5 Gary Neville 1992-2011 400 47 25 117 13 602
6 Wayne Rooney 2004-2017 393 40 20 98 8 559
7 Alex Stepney 1966-1978 433 44 35 23 4 539
8 Tony Dunne 1960-1973 414 55 21 40 5 535
9 Denis Irwin 1990-2002 368 43 31 75 12 529
10 Joe Spence 1919-1933 481 29 0 0 0 510

All Time Manchester United Top Scorers

At their best Manchester United score a huge amount of goals. Here is the list of the club’s all-time top scorers.

Rank Player Name Years League Goals FA Cup Goals League Cup Goals European Goals Other Goals Total
1 Wayne Rooney 2004-2017 183 22 5 39 4 253
2 Bobby Charlton 1956-1973 199 19 7 22 2 249
3 Denis Law 1962-1973 171 34 3 28 1 237
4 Jack Rowley 1937-1955 182 26 0 0 3 211
5= Dennis Viollet 1952-1962 159 5 1 13 1 179
5= George Best 1963-1974 137 21 9 11 1 179
7= Joe Spence 1919-1913 158 10 0 0 0 168
7= Ryan Giggs 1991-2014 114 12 12 29 1 168
9 Mark Hughes 1983-1986, 1988-1995 120 17 16 9 1 163
10 Paul Scholes 1994-2011, 2012-2013 107 13 9 26 0 155

Biggest Man Utd Signings & Transfers

Manchester United transfer news is regularly in the heavens. The club is one of the very richest in the world and they can afford to pay vast fees for players. In this section we’re going to explore some of the biggest ever incomings and outgoings.

Most Expensive Manchester United Transfers

Manchester United signed Paul Pogba in 2016, for what was then a world record transfer fee. Rarely a summer goes by without a huge outlay on a player. Here are the club’s biggest ever signings.

Rank Player Name Year Signed Club Signed From Reported Fee
1 Paul Pogba 2016 Juventus £94,500,000
2 Romelu Lukaku 2017 Everton £90,000,000
3 Antony 2022 Ajax £86,000,000
4 Harry Maguire 2019 Leicester City £80,000,000
5 Jadon Sancho 2021 Borussia Dortmund £73,000,000
6 Casemiro 2022 Real Madrid £70,000,000
7 Angel Di Maria 2014 Real Madrid £59,700,000
8 Lisandro Martinez 2022 Ajax £57,000,000
9 Aaron Wan-Bissaka 2019 Crystal Palace £50,000,000
10 Fred 2018 Shakhtar Donetsk £47,000,000
10 Bruno Fernandes 2020 Sporting Lisbon £47,000,000

Club’s Most Expensive Sales

Even a club as rich as Manchester United needs to balance the books. Here are the largest transfer fees that the club has received for players.

Rank Player Name Year Sold Club Sold To Reported Fee
1 Cristiano Ronaldo 2009 Real Madrid £80,000,000
2 Romelu Lukaku 2019 Inter Milan £74,000,000
3 Angel Di Maria 2015 Paris St-Germain £44,300,000
4 Daniel James 2021 Leeds United £25,000,000
5 David Beckham 2003 Real Madrid £24,500,000
6 Morgan Schneiderlin 2017 Everton £24,000,000
7= Memphis Depay 2017 Lyon £16,000,000
7= Danny Welbeck 2014 Arsenal £16,000,000
9 Jaap Stam 2001 Lazio £15,250,000
10 Juan Sebastian Veron 2003 Chelsea £15,000,000

Manchester United Manager List

Thanks to having had two of the most successful and long-serving managers of all-time within their ranks, Manchester United’s list of former managers is fairly small. Here is the full list of the men that have taken charge of the club.

  • A.H. Albut (1892-1900)
  • James West (1900-1903)
  • Ernest Mangall (1903-1912)
  • T.J. Wallworth (1912)
  • John Bentley (1912-1914)
  • Jack Robson (1914-1921)
  • John Chapman (1921-1926)
  • Lal Hiditch (1926-1927)
  • Herbert Barnlett (1927-1931)
  • Walter Crickmer (1931-1932)
  • Scott Duncan (1932-1937)
  • Walter Crickmer (1937-1945)
  • Matt Busby (1945-1969)
  • Jimmy Murphy (1958)

  • Wilf McGuinness (1969-1970)
  • Matt Busby (1970-1971)
  • Frank O’Farrell (1971-1972)
  • Tommy Doherty (1972-1977)
  • Dave Sexton (1977-1981)
  • Ron Atkinson (1981-1986)
  • Alex Ferguson (1986-2013)
  • David Moyes (2013-2014)
  • Ryan Giggs (2014)
  • Louis van Gaal (2014-2016)
  • Jose Mourinho (2016-2018)
  • Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (2018-2021)
  • Michael Carrick (2021)
  • Ralf Rangnick (2021-2022)
  • Erik ten Hag (2022-Present)

Manchester United Stadium

Manchester United Panorama 8051523746

Home Manchester United fixtures are played at Old Trafford. With a capacity of 74,310 it is the biggest club stadium in the UK and ranks eleventh in Europe. United fans call Old Trafford the Theatre of Dreams.

It has been Manchester United’s home ground since 1910, though due to bomb damage during World War II, the club had to share Maine Road with Manchester City between 1941 and 1949. Before moving to Old Trafford, the club had played fixtures at North Road and Bank Street.

Manchester United Rivalries

When you’re as successful as Manchester United, then you’re bound to pick up plenty of rivalries. In this section we’re going to examine Manchester United Champions League rivals and first, their domestic foes.

Liverpool vs Man United

The Manchester United vs Liverpool fixture is the biggest in England and can be compared with ‘El Clasico’ in Spain. These two clubs are the best supported and most successful teams in the country. They also happen to hail from rival cities not far from each other in North West England, so local antipathy is also part of the mix.

Manchester United have 20 English title wins, compared to Liverpool’s 19, but it is the Merseysiders that have been crowned as champions of Europe more often. Liverpool vs Manchester United is a fixture that has been seen in four domestic cup finals, with United beating their rivals in two FA Cup finals and Liverpool triumphing twice in League Cup finals. Here is the breakdown of Man United vs Liverpool results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Liverpool Wins
League Games 69 50 60
FA Cup Matches 10 4 4
League Cup Games 2 0 3
European Matches 0 1 1
Other Games 1 3 2
Man Utd vs Liverpool Results 82 58 70

Man City vs Man United – The Manchester Derby

Though geography plays a part in the rivalry with Liverpool, it can’t quite compare with Manchester United vs Manchester City when it comes to competing for local pride. This is a rivalry within a city and it’s the team in blue that claim to be the true team of Manchester, due to Manchester United having so many fans across the world.

For many years it was the red side of Manchester that enjoyed superiority, with Manchester United dominating the fixture and indeed, English football as a whole. That situation changed when Manchester City’s new owners made them one of the richest clubs in the world in 2008 and with the retirement of Alex Ferguson. In recent years it is City that have been the stronger team, with United in the unfamiliar position as underdogs. Here is the full breakdown of Man United vs Man City results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Manchester City Wins
League Games 65 52 49
FA Cup Matches 6 0 3
League Cup Games 4 1 5
European Matches 0 0 0
Other Games 2 0 0
Man Utd vs Man City Results 77 53 57

Chelsea vs Man United

Manchester United vs Chelsea has become a fierce rivalry over the past couple of decades. Like Manchester City, a change in ownership saw Chelsea become one of the richest clubs in the world when Roman Abramovich took over and they’ve been contenders for domestic and European honours ever since.

The most famous Chelsea vs Man Utd encounter came when the two clubs met in the 2008 Champions League final, with United winning on penalties after a 1-1 draw. They’ve battled for Premier League titles and also faced each other in three FA Cup finals, with Manchester United winning once and Chelsea twice. Here is the full breakdown of Man Utd vs Chelsea results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Chelsea Wins
League Games 63 52 45
FA Cup Matches 9 2 6
League Cup Games 3 1 2
European Matches 2 1 0
Other Games 1 3 1
Man United vs Chelsea Results 78 59 54

Man United vs Everton

Another rival that Manchester United have from the city of Liverpool are Everton. The rivalry was particularly fierce in the 1980s, when Everton had their great team under Howard Kendall. Having already won the First Division title in the 1984-85 season, they met Manchester United in the FA Cup Final, looking to land the Double. Instead, United won the match 1-0, despite having Kevin Moran sent off.

Everton gained revenge in 1994-95 when as massive underdogs, they beat Manchester United 1-0 in the FA Cup Final. United have signed some of Everton’s best players over the years, such as Wayne Rooney and Romelu Lukaku, adding to the rivalry. Here is the breakdown of Manchester United results against Everton.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Everton Wins
League Games 81 46 59
FA Cup Matches 6 0 6
League Cup Games 2 0 2
European Matches 1 1 0
Other Games 0 0 4
Man Utd vs Everton Results 90 47 71

Arsenal vs Man United

For some time Manchester United vs Arsenal was just about the most competitive and important fixture in England. Arsene Wenger’s arrival at Arsenal during the 1990s gave Alex Ferguson and Manchester United a worthy rival and for many years the clubs battled it out for leagues and cups.

Both teams had tough players, with Manchester United being captained by Roy Keane and the Gunners skippered by Patrick Vieira. Man United vs Arsenal encounters were often fiery, with scuffles on the pitch and in the tunnel, with the most famous encounter coming in 2004, when a slice of pizza was thrown at Ferguson. Here is the full breakdown of Manchester United match results against Arsenal.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Arsenal Wins
League Games 85 49 73
FA Cup Matches 8 2 6
League Cup Games 4 0 2
European Matches 2 0 0
Other Games 0 2 5
Man Utd vs Arsenal Results 98 53 86

Man Utd vs Newcastle

Another 1990s enemy was Newcastle United. Having been promoted to the Premier League under Kevin Keegan, Newcastle quickly became one of the most successful and biggest spending sides in England.

Manchester United vs Newcastle became a real rivalry, especially in the 1995/96 season, when the Magpies had a 12-point lead at the top of the Premier League, only to let it slip and enable Manchester United to win the title. Newcastle then pipped Manchester United to the signing of Alan Shearer for a world record fee. Here is the breakdown of Man United vs Newcastle results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Newcastle Wins
League Games 82 40 42
FA Cup Matches 4 0 0
League Cup Games 2 0 1
European Matches 0 0 0
Other Games 2 0 0
Newcastle vs Man United Results 90 40 43

Man United vs Aston Villa

Manchester and Birmingham are two of the biggest cities in England, separated by just 86 miles, making the Manchester United vs Aston Villa fixture a spicy one. They battled for the first ever Premier League title in 1992-93, with Villa managed by Alex Ferguson’s Old Trafford predecessor Ron Atkinson and United ultimately coming out on top.

Villa challenged for the title again in 1998-99, before falling away and allowing Manchester United to surpass them and win the Premier League and ultimately the Treble. Here is the full breakdown of Aston Villa vs Man United results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Aston Villa Wins
League Games 88 40 44
FA Cup Matches 11 0 2
League Cup Games 2 1 4
European Matches 0 0 0
Other Games 1 0 0
Man Utd vs Aston Villa Results 102 41 50

Tottenham vs Man United

The Man United vs Tottenham goes back to the 1950-51 season when the two clubs battled for the First Division title and Spurs ultimately prevailed. They continued to fight it out for trophies in the sixties and early seventies, with the two clubs perhaps the most glamorous in England at the time.

After years of United dominance under Alex Ferguson, the fixture has become more competitive in recent seasons, as Spurs have improved. Here is the complete breakdown of Manchester United game results against Tottenham.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Spurs Wins
League Games 85 43 42
FA Cup Matches 6 5 5
League Cup Games 3 0 5
European Matches 1 0 1
Other Games 0 1 0
Man Utd vs Tottenham Results 95 49 53

West Ham vs Man United

Manchester United vs West Ham is an intriguing fixture these days, with the former United manager David Moyes taking charge of the Hammers. West Ham have been fighting with Manchester United for European places in recent seasons.

In the past it’s Manchester United that have been dominant, but the Londoners have upset the odds on a number of occasions. Here is the breakdown of Man United vs West Ham results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw West Ham Wins
League Games 63 29 40
FA Cup Matches 6 3 4
League Cup Games 2 0 2
European Matches 0 0 0
Other Games 0 0 0
Man Utd vs West Ham Results 71 32 46

Man Utd vs Leeds

One of the bitterest rivalries in English football is Manchester United vs Leeds. It’s built upon the rivalry that exists between Lancashire and Yorkshire that goes back to the War of the Roses, along with the great Leeds side built by Don Revie, that became one of the best teams in England in the 1960s and early 1970s.

The Man United vs Leeds United fixture became relevant again in the 1991-92 season, when the two clubs battled for the First Division title, with Leeds stopping Alex Ferguson from landing his first league crown at Manchester United. Whenever these clubs are in the top flight together, there will be fireworks, with Leeds considering Manchester United to be their biggest rivals. Here is the complete breakdown of Leeds vs Man Utd results.

Competition Manchester United Wins Draw Leeds United Wins
League Games 39 33 26
FA Cup Matches 4 3 3
League Cup Games 5 0 0
European Matches 0 0 0
Other Games 0 0 0
Man United vs Leeds Results 49 36 29

European Rivalries

With Manchester United something of a permanent fixture in European competition, rivalries have built up with foreign clubs. United famously staged a late comeback to defeat Bayern Munich in the 1999 Champions League final and land the Treble, while there have also been memorable encounters with the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus. Here are some of the rivalries that have built up in recent years.

Man United vs Villarreal

The group stage of the 2021-22 Champions League saw Manchester United vs Villarreal. United won both games, with the match at Old Trafford being particularly memorable, as they came back from 1-0 down to win 2-1, thanks to a 95th minute winner from Cristiano Ronaldo.

These games gave the chance for the club to take some swift revenge, after the Man Utd vs Villarreal Europa League final of 2021, which the Yellow Submarine won on penalties. They had previously faced each other four times, all in the Champions League and with all finishing 0-0.

Man Utd vs Atletico Madrid

Another fixture that we saw in the 2021-22 Champions League was Atletico Madrid vs Manchester United. It was Atletico that triumphed, knocking Manchester United out of the competition in the last-16, with a 2-1 aggregate victory.

The only other time that the Manchester United vs Atletico Madrid fixture has been played, was in the 1991-92 European Cup Winners’ Cup. Manchester United were the defending champions, but once again it was Atletico that triumphed over two-legs, winning 4-1 on aggregate in the second-leg.

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Dan is a freelance journalist who has written for the likes of ESPN and FourFourTwo. Also a regular tipster for Betfair, Dan has been writing about sports betting for some of the biggest names in the industry, over many years.