Go anywhere in the world, and just mention Manchester United Football Club, and witness what happens. It doesn't matter whether you are in an airport lounge, cafe or pub before you can blink, you will be locked into a conversation. It won't be long before Bobby Charlton, Peter Schmeichel, Denis Irwin, Rio Ferdinand, Roger Byrne, Duncan Edwards, Bryan Robson, Denis Law and the flamboyant and ornamental George Best will send memories reeling back.
Today, MUFC boasts the lightning quick and mathematically impossible saves by goalkeeper David de Gea. Bastian Schweinsteiger, a German import with his icy and methodical skills as their midfielder. Wayne Rooney of course deserves a mention, but we are all familiar with his natural born magic.
Juan Mata's final closing of that long drawn out 44 passes versus the grid locked Southampton, it was simply a luscious finish. Ander Herrera, Juan's partner in crime adding their Spanish paella to the mix. Do you remember that back flip goal?
Manchester United Football Club's beginning was humble, founded as the Newton Heath LYR Football Club in 1878. Then, 24 years later in 1902 the club changed its name to Manchester United Football Club and they moved to Old Trafford in 1910. They have never been out of the spotlight except for two seasons in 1935/36 and 1974/75, where they sat in the 2nd Division.
It's common knowledge that Manchester United Football Club is the only club that has won 20 league titles, they have also cosied up to 11 FA Cups and 4 league cups. They have brought home 3 European Cups, UEFA Cup Winners Cup being the most coveted of them all. So, it's no surprise that Manchester United is indeed one of the most renowned and popular in the world, even in the deepest canals of the Far East where they stay up in the wee hours of the morning to watch them play.
Till this day, it boasts one of the highest average home attendances in Europe and Deloitte Touche, the accountancy and auditing firm estimates their fan base is a bewildering 75 million worldwide! Thanks to the television inventors Farnsworth and Jenkins, that they did not have to just rely on Manchester United ticket sales.
Alex Ferguson, set a record for the longest serving English Premier League football manager of 22 continuous seasons since the Premier League began in 1992. I doubt, this record will ever be broken for at least the next 150 years! Enviably, he still holds the record for the most FA Premier League titles won by a singular manager too, quite simply impossible in football these days but he did it.
So, where do they rank in terms of annual revenue? In 2015, all those merchandise, television rights and Manchester United ticket sales made it the 3rd most valuable club on this planet at £1.28 billion, just behind Real Madrid and Barcelona. The London Stock Exchange witnessed the club floated on its floor in 1991 and they even attempted the New York Stock Exchange in 2012.
If there is a game you wish to watch them play live, nothing beats the raw passion, grinding tempers flaring and fans going wild than a game with Manchester City and especially, Liverpool. The tickets are still reasonably priced at £53 in the south upper wings and cheapest at £41 at the South East Quadrant.
Tempted, when are you getting your Manchester United ticket?