Liverpool’s perfect start to the new Premier League season has sparked optimism on Merseyside that the club can finally end their long wait for a league title, having last been crowned champions of England almost 30 years ago.
Jurgen Klopp’s side came agonisingly close to ending their title drought last season, missing out to champions Manchester City by just a single point following an enthralling title race.
Many feel this could be the year the club are finally crowned champions again, though should their winless record extend they could join a list of clubs with the unwanted record of the longest gaps between titles wins.
Here are the five longest gaps between title success in English football history…
Burnley – 31 seasons
Perhaps hard to imagine in the current climate of the Premier League, but Burnley have twice been crowned as the best side in England. The Lancashire side’s first triumph came way back in 1921, where a 30-game unbeaten run helped them to finish top of the division.
Their success would not be sustained, however, as Clarets fans would have to wait until 1960 for the club’s next title. Burnley would pip Wolves and Tottenham to the title, earning entry to the European Cup for the first time the following season where they were eliminated by Hamburg in the quarter-finals despite winning the first leg at Turf Moor.
Since then their highest finish has been a runners-up position two seasons later, though the club are one of just a select few to have won each of English football’s four divisions in the ensuing years as they bounced around the footballing pyramid.
Manchester City – 43 seasons
Manchester City fans must continue to count their blessings following Sheikh Mansour’s takeover of the club just over a decade ago, the billionaire’s investment catapulting the club from mediocrity into one of Europe’s finest footballing sides.
City would endure a 31-year gap between their first title in 1937 and second in 1968, a team featuring the likes of Colin Bell and Mike Summerbee pipping rivals Manchester United – who would win the European Cup that year – to the title.
The club would struggle for silverware over the next four decades, before the world of their loyal fanbase was transformed by their new owners. It would take just four years for their takeover to deliver the ultimate success, Sergio Aguero’s iconic late goal on the final day of the season ending the club’s title drought.
The club have continued to go from strength to strength, adding a further three Premier League trophies to their growing cabinet, and look unlikely to suffer such lean years ever again.
Chelsea – 49 seasons
Another club for whom a takeover would change their history forever, Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich bankrolled Chelsea’s ascent to the top of the English game.
Arriving with the club on the verge of bankruptcy in 2003, Abramovich would help transform Chelsea into contenders with a series of star signings.
Prior to his arrival Chelsea had been crowned champions just once, the first major trophy of the club’s existence coming with title success in 1955.
That would all change just two years after Abramovich’s arrival, as Jose Mourinho would inspire the club to title success in 2005.
Having waited 49 seasons for title success, Mourinho would deliver a second successive championship the following season as a new era of success began at Stamford Bridge.
Aston Villa – 59 seasons
One of the grand old clubs of English football and founding members of The Football League, Aston Villa would enjoy much success in the early years of the competition, winning the title six times between the league’s formation in 1888 and 1910.
From there, however, the Midlands side would struggle to challenge, a series of runners-up positions following their triumph being mixed with relegation to the second and third tier.
Having established themselves back in the top flight the club’s long wait would finally end in 1981, some 59 seasons and 71 years since their last league title. Peter Withe’s goals would inspire the club to glory, and the forward would be the hero once more with the winning goal as Villa secured European Cup success the following season.
Their 1981 title triumph remains the last time the club were crowned champions.
Blackburn Rovers – 71 seasons
Another side who would enjoy early success in The Football League, winning titles in 1912 and 1914 shortly before the beginning of the first World War.
It would be a long, long wait for the Lancashire side to return to the top of English football, but like Chelsea and Manchester City after them, Blackburn would thrive following significant investment during the Premier League era.
Jack Walker’s chequebook would allow Kenny Dalglish to build a side capable of challenging English football’s elite, and a side propelled by the prolific Alan Shearer would pip Manchester United to the title in 1995.
The title race would famously go to the final day, Blackburn loss at Liverpool almost proving costly, though Manchester United’s failure to win at West Ham finally ended Rovers’ 71 season wait for title success.