Season 1973/74
original illustrations of the kits worn during the season

Change Kit Variant
Playing Record in this kit:

P1 W0 D0 L1 F0 A2

This kit was worn in the following matches:
Date Opposition Date Opposition
25/9 Liverpool (a)    
Third Kit (long-sleeved)
Third Kit (short-sleeved Aertex)
Playing Record in this kit:

P6 W1 D2 L3 F3 A7

This kit was worn in the following matches:
Date Opposition Date Opposition Date Opposition Date Opposition
25/8 Arsenal (a) 27/10 Burnley (a) 12/1 West Ham (a) 2/3 Sheff Utd (a)
20/4 Southampton (a) 29/4 Stoke City (a)        
Home Kit
Change Kit

The Season in brief

On April 27th 1974 Birmingham's 2-1 victory over Norwich ended United's thirty seven years as a First Division club. Relegation had looked probable since Christmas but an unbeaten six game run in March and April, that coincided with the 'Doc' abandoning his defensive tactics, had raised hopes the club would again avoid the drop. Irrespective of their results, United's survival relied upon both Birmingham and Southampton losing.

Denis Law's last kick in League football, an instinctive back heel, gave City a 1-0 'derby' victory at Old Trafford and instigated a crowd invasion. The game was abandoned but the result stood. Two days later the side were beaten 1-0 at Stoke to finish twenty first. Despite folkore suggesting the Lawman relegated United it was simply not true; even if United had beaten City and Stoke, the club would still have been relegated.

The Cups provided precious little relief for United's fans. Beaten in the second round of the League Cup by Middlesbrough, United fell at the second hurdle in the F.A. Cup - Ipswich winning at Old Trafford. The club finally cancelled George Best's contract in January 1974. In spite of the manner of his departure, George remains one of the greatest players in United's history.

Shirts were available with both long and short sleeves and as the choice of sleeve length was left up to individual players, both styles were worn in the same game.

Although the official change kit was all white, we can find no evidence that it was actually worn worn in a competitive game. At Anfield in September, United wore a variant with white socks with thin red and black bands. the same socks were worn with the home kit in the friendly against Rangers the following March.

We are grateful to Athanasios Papathanasiou for sending us comprehensive details of the kits worn in each game.

In the pre-season phot call, the home goalkeeper jerseys featured a larger club badge than was worn during the season. This shirt may have been worn in the pre-season games. Move your cursor over the image to reveal the variant. We believe that the goalkeeper change shirt was the first United goalkeeper's shirt to feature the number 1 on the back.

Can you help identify the kits worn by United in the games at Derby County on 16/2/1974 and at Wolves on 23/2/1974