Toe Poke Daily: After Solskjaer's '30 years' claim, when will Man United next win Premier League?
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Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer set the cat among the pigeons ahead of Sunday's clash against Liverpool by claiming that his club would not have to wait three decades for a league title, as they have at Anfield.
"I am sure we will bounce back and win the league," Solskjaer said ahead of welcoming Jurgen Klopp's reigning European champions to Old Trafford. "And I am sure it won't be 30 years until the next Premier League that we do win."
Liverpool were last champions of England in 1990, when they won the old First Division for a then-record 18th time. United have since passed that mark, with Sir Alex Ferguson achieving his stated aim of knocking Liverpool "off their perch" by bringing a 20th title to Old Trafford in 2013. But right now, United are well out of the title reckoning while Liverpool sit atop the Premier League.
So, the question is: How long will it be before United next win the Premier League? Take a look at the options below and then vote for which one you think will happen.
If United's long and painful search for a new technical director is ended in time for the right candidate to work his magic in the next two transfer windows, then a big-money splurge on star signings and the dead wood being cleared from the squad could pave the way for a miraculous return to the summit of English football. If it's not Ole at the wheel, then maybe it will Mauricio Pochettino who leads them to glory if his reign at Tottenham ends by next summer.
Within the next five years
United's new transfer chief begins work by making a plea for patience from the fans as they lay out an ambitious but achievable five-year plan. That patience is rewarded as a steady stream of new signings that gradually enhance all areas of the squad combine with the cream of the club's youth products to bring the Glory Glory back to Man United, with club captain David De Gea lifting the trophy.
Within the next 10 years
With the rest of the Premier League's biggest teams keeping their houses in order and their squads continually replenished with record-breaking signings, the path back to the top for United proves to be a marathon, not a sprint. But a club as well-resourced and supported as United can't be kept down forever and, with a spine of club stalwarts Axel Tuanzebe, Tahith Chong and Mason Greenwood running through the team, the long wait for a 21st title is ended before 2030.
Within 30 years of their last title
Who knows what can happen between now and 2043, the year when it will be 30 years since United's Robin van Persie-inspired league triumph in 2013. Perhaps the striker's son, Shaqueel van Persie, will be the star who ends the long title drought. The 12-year-old winger is developing in Feyenoord's youth system right now, meaning he could be inspiring United to glory some time between 2030 and 2040. The fact he spent some time in Manchester City's academy before returning to his father's homeland would just add a delicious layer of narrative for United fans as they celebrate their championship.
More than 30 years after their last title
All bets are off at this point if glory continues to evade United. Liverpool, or even City, could have long since surpassed their current record of 20 titles. FC United of Manchester, the breakaway club set up by disgruntled United fans in 2005, or the Class of '92-backed Salford City could be above them in the league. And if the long-looming spectre of a European Super League ever becomes reality, there may not even be a Premier League in existence to be won anymore...