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 when the plane carrying the team home from a European match 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.