Which teams have never won a Premier League title?
We’re usually more familiar with the league champions, but what about those teams that compete with the big boys but never take the top prize.
As we head into the final weekend of action in the 2021/22 season, one of Manchester City or Liverpool will add another Premier League trophy to their silverware collection. But how do those current giants of the game compare across the years? We look back at those that have won the most, but also those clubs that have never finished above all the others.
The domestic English league is one of the oldest in footballing history with the first league season taking place back in 1888 with Preston North End the first ever club to be crowned English league champions in a 12-team competition with the Lancashire based outfit topping the table with an unbeaten campaign and finishing 11 points of second placed Stoke City.
The arrival of the Premier League
As the game developed in England and more clubs became established, additional leagues were needed with the top flight becoming the Football League First Division. Promotion and relegation into the second, third and then fourth divisions ensured there was excitement until the end of the season for most fans.
It retained this title for a decade before the Sky backed Premier League was introduced in 1992 as the game’s popularity soared domestically following the 1990 Italy World Cup and the introduction of satellite television. It was during the 1990s that the Premier League’s global appeal increased due to astute marketing and an attractive league that started to attract some of the best names in the game. These days, mainly due to records not being accurate maintained, detailed statistics begin at the start of the Premier League era, although for league titles we must focus on the full life of the competition.
Over time, Manchester United established themselves as the leading side in terms of domestic league title wins with the Red Devils bagging 20 over the years with the last success coming in the 2012-13 season. Liverpool FC, with their own dominance during the 70s and 80s run the Mancunians close in this regard with the Anfield club having lifted the league title 19 times as North London based Arsenal complete the podium with the Gunners enjoying 13 title wins.
Manchester City are the current Premier League champions with their five title wins in the 21st century coinciding with a financial injection from their UAE based owners.
Current Premier League sides with zero league wins
Of the current 20 sides participating in the 2021-22 season, only seven have never won the top domestic league title in its various guises. West Ham United, Brighton, Southampton, Watford, Norwich City, Crystal Palace and Brentford are the sides who dream of emulating the feat of Leicester City with the Foxes the first side to break the hegemony of the traditional ‘Big 6′ with their surprise title win back in the 2015-16 season.
English top flight winners
In this graphic you can see how the title winners have evolved over the years.