Sir Dave Brailsford has been described as ‘frightening’ after he took words of advice from Manchester United legend Sir Alex Ferguson.
Brailsford and Jean Claude Blanc will be members of the board as Ratcliffe looks to turn around United’s fortunes.
The well-respected cycling journalist Daniel Friebe spoke to Sky Sports about Brailsford and his qualities. The Ineos lead was a leading factor in British Cycling becoming multiple-time Gold medalists in the Olympics.
“I’ve known Dave for 15 years and interviewed him regularly when he was a fixture at bike races,” said Friebe. “Something you’ve always heard and always observed is this kind of ruthlessness. It used to come back in everything you’d hear about him.
“People have said, ‘Oh, he’s not easy to work with’. I’ve known people who have worked with him and have talked about, rather than things that he said, more his silences that are more frightening or intimidating.”
Brailsford is a cut-throat figure, who will take any measures that help his team reach the top. He does not carry slackers and even claimed that he would not work with someone who didn’t have the correct drive, despite their level of quality in their position.
That kind of leadership was passed down to him when he met the great Sir Alex, who provided Brailsford with a piece of advice that he still uses today.
“I remember talking about conversations he’d had with Sir Alex Ferguson,” continued Friebe. “This is going back maybe 10, 15 years. I think one of the things that Ferguson used to say that Dave definitely retained was: ‘Get rid of the disruptive influences, get rid of people who aren’t working in the same direction as you’.
“Dave, as far as I could see, really assimilated that. And that was one of the pillars of the team’s success, knowing when to get rid of people, knowing when people were not on the same page as you.
“Speaking with physios, mechanics, that is something that happened at Team Sky. They wouldn’t necessarily do anything egregiously wrong, but Dave would get to a point and think, ‘This person is not for us anymore,’ and out they would go.”
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