Manchester United's Europa League final defeat to Villareal may have been a thoroughly disappointing end to the season - not least as it came after a marathon penalty shootout - but it somewhat overshadowed the fact that they made decent progress in the Premier League.
While they did still finish 12 points behind champions Manchester City, it was the closest United have come to top sot since last winning the title themselves in 2012/13 - and such a gap says more about City's monstrous strength than their own deficiencies.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side proved that they can live with the very best on their day, beating City at the Etihad in March to delay their ultimate success; now the challenge is to prove they can do it over the course of 38 games.
The former United striker may have more than his fair share of doubters as far as his managerial ability is concerned, but it would appear that the club hierarchy beg to differ, handing the Norwegian a new three-year contract in July.
On the pitch, the biggest signing at Old Trafford this summer came in the form of Jadon Sancho, who finally joined from Borussia Dortmund a year after seeming so close to making the move.
The England international has the potential to be one of the best in the world, and United fans - and Premier League viewers as a whole - are in for a serious treat if he dazzles like he did over in the Bundesliga.
Veteran front man Edinson Cavani has also extended his stay, having made an instant impact in his first season, while Jesse Lingard returns revitalised from a sensational loan spell at West Ham. And that's without the addition of Cristiano Ronaldo...
Goalkeepers: David de Gea, Lee Grant, Dean Henderson, Tom Heaton
Defenders: Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, Harry Maguire, Diogo Dalot, Luke Shaw, Alex Telles, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Raphael Varane, Teden Mengi
Midfielders: Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Fred, Bruno Fernandes, Amad, Nemanja Matic, Donny van de Beek, Scott McTominay, Hannibal
Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo, Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood, Jadon Sancho, Anthony Elanga, Shola Shoretire
PREMIER LEAGUE Everything you need to know for the 2021/22 season
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