Manchester United: Power Ranking the Greatest Teams Ever
As Manchester United prepare for their fifth European Cup final and their third in four years, comparisons with past sides will command much of the week's narrative.
The common consensus is that is far from a vintage crop of players, yet an impressive league win and another Champions League final appearance hint at a team greater than the sum of its parts.
Sir Alex Ferguson has constructed some great sides in the past, but where do the current crop rank among the swaths of legendary United teams?
Let's compare them to past European Cup winning sides....
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Even Sir Alex himself has often been forced to refute allegations of this side's purported average-ness.
While United's away performances haven't illuminated the league's landscape, closer inspection reveals a strong side whose main weapon lies in an immense strength in depth.
As many as three players could start at right back on Saturday, while the unlucky duo will be joined on the bench by the Premier League's top scorer and top assister.
The central midfield hasn't caught the imagination, but nonetheless all members have Champions League medals among their litany of awards.
Not a vintage crop, but still merit inclusion merit inclusion in this illustrious company.
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A decade after the Busby Babes were tragically killed in Munich, Manchester United were the champions of Europe.
The side had taken league titles in 1965 and 1967 before their crowning glory arrived in Wembley, which incidentally, is also the scene of Saturday's showpiece.
Busby sculpted the team through a mix of shrewd transfer business with acquisitions such as Dennis Law married with a nurturing of youth players such as George Best, and it looked as though a period of dominance could follow.
However, the side failed to build on the historic achievement. Busby retired in 1969, and United were relegated within five years of being crowned European Champions.
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After being eviscerated in the San Siro in the 2007 semifinal, Sir Alex set about reinforcing his squad. Within 12 months, United were European Champions.
Over £50m was spent that summer, perhaps the most significant arrival being Owen Hargreaves who added a tenacity to the sides midfield that had been sorely lacking.
United also won three successive league titles in a period when the Premier League was the continent's strongest by a considerable distance.
Cristiano Ronaldo was the star performer, heading the opener in the Moscow decider, but he was ably supported by Wayne Rooney and Carlos Tevez.
It may have been an unheralded side, but those achievements rank up favourably with history's best.
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The class of 1999 are top of the pile by virtue of achieving a feat never matched, let alone surpassed in the English game. Within 10 magical days in May of 1999, Manchester United won the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League.
Unlike other sides in this list, the team was virtually set in stone with none of the question marks surrounding the identity of Saturday's lineup.
The goalkeeper was indisputably the world's best, a solid backline led by the impenetrable Jaap Stam, the drive of Keane allied to the guile of Scholes in the engine room, and Giggs and Beckham supplying the deadly duo of Cole and Yorke. The side would romp to two more league titles, and in both seasons, only the eventual victors could remove them from Europe.