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By ESPN Staff
May 31, 2006

Real Madrid set July date for presidential elections

MADRID, May 31 (Reuters) - Real Madrid will hold an election to choose a new club president on July 2.

The club said on Wednesday that those members wishing to stand would be able to present their candidatures from June 6-15 after which official campaigning would begin.

The election was prompted by the resignation of Fernando Martin, who was ousted by the board on April 26, only two months after replacing his predecessor Florentino Perez who quit at the end of February.

Perez had been at the helm since 2000 and decided to throw in the towel as the team headed for a third consecutive season without winning a major trophy, their worst run of form in more than 50 years.

Former director Juan Manuel Villar Mir and ex-world rally champion Carlos Sainz announced a joint bid for the presidency on Monday.

Leading Spanish businessman Juan Palacios, lawyer and economist Arturo Baldesano and dissident director Ramon Calderon are scheduled to announce their bids next week, while former president Lorenzo Sanz has yet to decide if he will stand.

The potential candidates have begun trying to win support from the club members who are entitled to vote in the election by announcing the coaches, sporting directors and players they hope to recruit if they are elected.