Last summer, Sir Alex Ferguson was once again talking wistfully about the quartet of forwards that inspired Manchester United to the treble in 1999.
"For us to achieve what we want to, we must have four strikers of the quality of Dwight Yorke, Andy Cole, Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer," the Scot insisted.
Hope became reality a few weeks later with the Â£31m capture of Dimitar Berbatov.
Yet Cristiano Ronaldo, Carlos Tevez, Wayne Rooney and Berbatov have failed to live up to expectations so far. BBC Sport finds out why they've been struggling.
Man Utd strikers - early struggles
Despite their attacking riches, United have struggled for goals in the Premier League this season.
They have scored 29 times, putting them fifth in the Premier League scoring charts behind Chelsea (40), Manchester City (38), Liverpool (35) and Arsenal (30), albeit having played two games less than their rivals.
In their last six league games they have scored a paltry four goals.
Cristiano Ronaldo is the team's leading league scorer with eight goals, while Rooney has four, Berbatov three and Tevez two.
Man Utd strikers - class of 1998/9
Old Trafford legend Andrew Cole believes the quartet can emulate their 1998/9 predecessors, though.
The treble-winning side scored 80 Premier League goals, 12 more than the second-most prolific team, Liverpool.
Yorke and Cole plundered 35 of those goals, Solskjaer weighing in with 12.
"The beauty of that quartet was that we could all play together and all score goals," Cole told BBC Sport.
"Each of us could drop off or play up top. I even had a good partnership with Teddy, despite the fact we never spoke."
Man Utd strikers - combinations
Ferguson's preferred striking combination this season has been Berbatov, Rooney and Ronaldo, who have started eight league games together.
The trio are expected to start against Chelsea at Old Trafford on Sunday, with Tevez again on the bench.
United have won six of the matches that Berbatov, Rooney and Ronaldo have started, with the trio contributing eight goals towards a team total of 15 in those matches.
The next most popular combination is Tevez, Berbatov and Ronaldo, who have started four matches, winning three and contributing six goals towards a total of nine.
Man Utd strikers - change of style
The arrival of Berbatov has changed the way United have played this season.
In the 4-0 win over Aston Villa last season (left), the average positions of the players show that Ronaldo (7), Rooney (10) and Tevez (32) attacked from deep and regularly interchanged positions.
Against Arsenal in their 2-1 defeat this season (right), Rooney led the line for United, with Ronaldo to his right and Berbatov (9) playing as a link between midfield and attack.
Man Utd strikers - Ronaldo focus
Comparing Ronaldo's touches in the 4-0 win over Villa in March (left) and against the same opponents this season (right) provide a further example of this point.
Last season, the Portuguese star tended to start centrally, with Rooney tucked in behind.
Against Villa last season, Ronaldo made most of his touches in the attacking half and drifted wide from a central position.
This season, he has tended to play wide and drift inside. In this season's 0-0 draw at Villa Park, Ronaldo was stationed on the left and made occasional forays inside.
Man Utd strikers - Rooney's new role
Rooney's role also seems to have changed following the arrival of Berbatov.
Against Villa last season (left) the England star had a roving role on the left-hand side of an attacking triumvirate also including Ronaldo and Tevez.
Most of Rooney's touches were on the left, but he made forays all over the pitch, even picking up the ball deep in his own half.
This season he has tended to lead the line, with Berbatov playing in behind. Against Arsenal (right) almost all of Rooney's touches were in the attacking half.
Man Utd strikers - Cole backing
Cole remains convinced the quartet will propel United to the title.
"It takes time to adapt to a new style and to build partnerships. When I first went to United, (former first-team coach) Brian Kidd told me: 'If you think 40 goals is enough at this football club, you're wrong'.
"I looked at him and thought he was mad. But once I'd been at United for a few months, I knew exactly where he was coming from.
"I had to work incredibly hard to develop my game and these players will do the same. I think they'll take United to the title."
By Simon Austin and Lenny Hanniford