SIR ALEX ARTICLES

08/11/2011 16:07, Report by A Marshall & S Bartram
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Working with Sir Alex

David Gill speaks to MUTV about life with Sir Alex...

As chief executive, I'm involved in all areas but the key working relationship is with the manager at any club. My relationship with Alex has developed over the years. We both have formal meetings and things like that but it's very much built on an informal working relationship, built up on trust over that period. We trust each other implicitly and I think it's been of benefit to Manchester United.

In the world of sport, where things are measured in very short time-frames, to be at one club for 25 years is obviously phenomenal. I think all the usual adjectives and superlatives quite rightly apply in this situation. Frankly, it's amazing to maintain that motivation and hunger for success in a very demanding environment for 25 years and it's quite rightly regarded as a brilliant achievement. I think his record is there for everyone to see. He's managed to sustain that level of success over that period by reinventing the team. Players clearly haven't got a shelf-life of 25 years so he's managed to change teams at appropriate times and deliver sustained success.

The world of sport these days is so competitive and to continue that over that period, I think is truly fantastic. He is clearly as the media see him - very motivated, competitive and wants to win. All those attributes let him have that success but, at the same time, he's witty with a good sense of humour. He's also interested in other areas like racing, fine wines and American history. I think he's got a lot of interests outside of football and he's also a very generous man in terms of support for other managers who have fallen on hard times. He retains friendships for many, many years and his attendance at funerals is probably one of the highest in the country, recognising people who have been in his life and honouring them when they sadly pass away. He has many, many attributes much wider than the driven man you see on TV week in and week out.

He's very supportive, very loyal and, at the same time, he's very black and white with firm opinions. Most successful people do have firm opinions and stick to them. Certainly, it'll be difficult to replace him - it's naive to say anything other than that but we are a great club whose values go back in history to our heritage to the 50s and 60s and the last 25 years with Alex. To continue with that, the new manager

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