Over the past fifteen years Manchester United has set the standard for all other clubs. It was not ever thus. In 1902 Manchester United rose, phoenix-like, from the ashes of a debt-ridden Newton Heath. Before the First World War broke out United had clinched two league titles, won the FA Cup for the first time and, in 1910, relocated to what would become the Theatre of Dreams, Old Trafford.The graph of success was not ever upward; there were long fallow periods, including several spells out of the top flight. In 1938-39, with Europe again on the brink of war, United had just celebrated its latest return to English football's top table. This time the club would remain there for 36 years, a golden period of glorious triumphs, brilliant teams and legendary players. For much of that time the heartbeat of the club was Matt Busby, whose vision it was to make United the greatest force in both domestic and European football. But he did more than simply establish United as a member of world football's elite.
This was the period that made United what it is today: the most famous club in the world, with legions of fans in all corners of the globe; and the richest, a global brand as well as a sporting institution.This tells the story of Manchester United's inexorable rise to the top. Lavishly illustrated using photographs from the "Daily Mail" archives, many reproduced for the first time, it is a unique pictorial record of how a legend was built.