Jim McLean took over from Kerr in 1971 and took the club to their first Scottish Cup Final in 1974, losing out to Celtic in the final.
Dundee United finished third in the league in 1977/78 and 1978/79 then went on to win the Scottish League Cup in 1980 and 1981. Then finally the club won the Premier League championship in 1982/83, beating Dundee 2-1 at Dens Park on the last day of the season to clinch the title.
The following season they reached the semi-final of the European Cup, losing out to AS Roma. Defeats in the Scottish Cup and League Cup finals followed the next season and it got even worse in 1986/87 when they lost the Scottish Cup final to St Mirren and the UEFA Cup to Gothenburg in the space of a fortnight.
Defeats in cup finals became par for the course for the next few years until McLean handed over the manager's job to Ivan Golac in 1993. The following year he led the club to victory in the Scottish Cup, but then to relegation the next year as Billy Kirkwood took over from Golac.