Karren Brady: ‘I’ve never walked away from anything – and I’m not going to start now’

The embattled West Ham CEO and Apprentice star says she is a champion of women’s rights. So why is she happy to work with men who are notorious for undermining them?

Karren Brady is immaculate – navy dress, navy tights, navy shoes and Chanel belt, her hair perfectly coiffed, exuding warmth and confidence. She directs me to her equally immaculate office at West Ham United, the football club where she is the vice-chairman. Brady sits behind the desk, a Warholesque print of West Ham legend Bobby Moore above her, a laptop in front, and a huge flatscreen TV with rolling news on the wall. Her world seems perfectly composed. You would never guess Brady’s football club is in meltdown and fans are calling for her head.

At 48, and a quarter of a century after becoming Birmingham City’s CEO, she is still known as “the first lady of football”. But,

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