Eyes were on Old Trafford and Manchester United this season as everyone in the wider world of football knew that incoming manager Erik ten Hag had a massive job on his hands to turn their more recent form around, sort out some team issues, and get the former Premier League giants back on the right track.
Having overseen some big spending during the summer with Lisandro Martinez and Anthony both arriving from Ten Hag's former club Ajax for well over £100 million, an additional £65 million sent in Real Madrid's direction for experienced defensive midfielder Casemiro, there were also quite a few high profile departures, and as expected, it was a mixed and inconsistent start to the 2022/23 campaign for the side as the new gaffer began getting his message and style of play over to the team. Punters on Lottoland sports would have had a plethora of odds to choose from when it came to how they would progress over the course of the season.
Having lost their opening two games, they did pick up eight wins (plus two further losses) and it was not until mid October that they picked up their first draw. The side then developed some real consistency, and went on a number of long winning streaks, and with the season now at an end, there is no way that United fans will not be happy with how the campaign ended.
61 games in total, 41 wins across all competitions and only eleven defeats is quite the record for a first season in charge and having taken victory over Fulham last weekend, the season could get a little bit better as they face of against local rivals City at Wembley in the FA Cup Final and could potentially complete a domestic double following on from the earlier League Cup win.
Speaking after Fulham, Ten Hag said.
"I think the three points are justified. I think we created many chances so I am happy with this win and happy with third place. To win 27 home games [across all competitions] in one season is a big achievement. The penalty save was a turning point. We were better organised in and out of possession after that."
With third place in the English top flight secured, and obviously Champions League football and the riches that offers, he added.
"It was a difficult start to the season. We grew as a team and as individuals. There are many competitors for the top-four positions. It's a big compliment for this team."
Fans will naturally have one eye on the ongoing takeover talk given there are offers on the table from both Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his Ineos Group as well as Sheikh Jassim, but for now the focus will be on Wembley and then whatever happens at Boardroom level, supporters will simply be hoping that Ten Hag can oversee further improvement over the summer and during next season itself.