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Page last updated at 15:42 GMT, Thursday, 14 May 2009 16:42 UK

Ex-president aims for Real return

Florentino Perez
Perez has pledged to bring the glory years back to Madrid

Florentino Perez has confirmed he will run for the presidency of Real Madrid, a post he previously held from 2000-06.

Perez implemented Real's 'Galacticos' policy, which saw the club sign star players such as David Beckham, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo and Luis Figo.

He said: "Real need to have several of the best players in the world and even though I can't name names, we have a spectacular project planned.

"We will work towards making Real the best club in the world once more."

The announcement has already fuelled speculation that there will be a determined move for Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo, along with AC Milan's Kaka.

Asked about the Portuguese winger at a press conference, Perez would only say: "Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the best players in the world."

He was equally tight-lipped on Kaka, saying: "I'm an intimate friend of Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani and when we meet up we always have a good chat. And we also talk about football."

We have to get to the level of Barcelona and Manchester United

Ex-Real president Florentino Perez

First time around, Perez's claim that he would sign Figo from Barcelona was a huge factor in his election, a promise he fulfilled as his team of Galacticos took shape, winning the Champions League in 2002 and two La Liga titles.

He also claimed to have balanced the books at Real, although that was disputed by his long-term successor, Ramon Calderon.

He resigned in 2006, claiming the club needed a new direction. Real have failed to get beyond the last 16 in the Champions League in any of the past five seasons, and were heavily beaten by Liverpool this year.

They have won La Liga for the last two seasons but seem certain to hand over the title to Barcelona.

606: DEBATE
Mark J - BBC Sport

Perez added: "I want to make Madrid great again. I want us to be a leader in Europe, to compete with teams like Barcelona, Manchester United and Chelsea.

"We have seen that Barcelona and Manchester United have played the best football in Europe this year. That's the level we have to get to."



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see also
Superb Barca destroy rivals Real
02 May 09 |  Europe
Liverpool 4-0 R Madrid (agg 5-0)
10 Mar 09 |  Europe
Real name boss after election row
03 Jul 06 |  Europe


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