The thought of Manchester United winning the Premier League title anytime soon seems crazy.
Louis van Gaal has followed in the footsteps of David Moyes by bringing mediocrity to Old Trafford, and the club still face a huge battle to finish in the top four.
But United fans, worry not. Here are three reasons why the club can return to the top of English football next season and end their agonising wait to regain the crown.
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A Decade ago
10 years ago, United were in a similar situation. Arsenal and Chelsea had established themselves as the frontrunners of English football and the pressure was on Sir Alex Ferguson to turn things around.
Initially, it looked impossible. Particularly when prolific striker Ruud van Nistelrooy was sold to Real Madrid and nobody was brought in to replace him. Michael Carrick signed from Tottenham but he was to be the club’s one sole signing of the summer.
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Yet Ferguson responded to his critics with his young side blitzing Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea out of the water to land the title. It was also the season where Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney lived up to their potential and came of age.
United won the title with 89 points – six ahead of Chelsea in second – and finally, their wait for the crown was over.
Like Ronaldo and Rooney a decade ago, fans are still yet to see the best of Anthony Martial and Memphis Depay.
Martial, a £36 million signing from French side Monaco, has reaffirmed his status as one of the biggest hopes for the future with 12 goals for the campaign.
Memphis has endured a nightmare season under Van Gaal yet, given his quality displays for PSV Eindhoven in Holland last year and at the 2014 World Cup, there is still plenty of time ahead to make the grade.
The duo can be big players for the club next season and, can emulate Ronaldo and Rooney by bringing the glory days back to Old Trafford.
The common consensus seems to be that Mourinho will succeed Van Gaal at the end of the season.
And despite his troubled second spell at Chelsea, he still guided the club to the league title and Capital One Cup last term.
He comes with baggage but guarantees success and, even if it for just three years, United need him at the helm in order to compete with Pep Guardiola at Manchester City.
Mourinho could lure big names such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Old Trafford, and bring the excitement factor that has been lacking in the years since Ferguson’s retirement.
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