1931 - United relegated from top flight
1934 - United Road terrace is covered
1939 - March; Old Trafford's attendance record is set as 76,962 see Wolves beat Grimsby in the FA Cup semi-final
1940 - 22 December; the Luftwaffe inflicts superficial damage to the stadium
1941 - 11 March; German bombs hit OT again, this time destroying large parts
1945 - Matt Busby is appointed; United are playing home games at Maine Rd.
1949 - 24 August; United play at OT for the first time since the '41 bombing and beat Bolton Wanderers 3-0
1957 - Floodlights are installed in time for the European Cup semi vs Real Madrid
1959 - Stretford End is covered
1960 - Capacity increased to 66,500
But darker days loomed. Due to the proximity of Trafford Park industrial estate and the Manchester Ship Canal, United’s HQ was at risk from Hitler’s bombs, and was duly pummelled by two Luftwaffe raids.
During the first raid, on 22 December 1940, the ground suffered enough superficial damage for the Christmas Day clash with Stockport County to be moved to Edgeley Park, but normal business was soon resumed. However, there was no such rapid recovery from the second attack, on the night of 11 March, when most of the main stand was wrecked, the dressing rooms and offices devastated and the pitch scorched and shrivelled. It was the most extensive damage suffered by any league club during the war, and United were homeless. Enter Manchester City with the offer of Maine Road as a temporary venue. It was here the Reds were destined to spend the next eight years.
In November 1944 the War Damage Commission announced that Old Trafford was not a total loss and soon local MP Ellis Smith, an avid follower of the Reds, became involved in efforts to obtain grants for rebuilding. The war ended in 1945 and when the Commission came up with £4,800 to clear the debris, with a further £17,478