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Jan, 22, 2009

Real Madrid target Arsenal boss Wenger

Real Madrid presidential contender Florentino Perez will make the appointment of Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger the cornerstone of his election campaign.

"Florentino wants to make Wenger both coach and general manager of Real this summer - and will promise it will happen," a source close to Perez told The Mirror.

Perez is the favourite to win the presidency following the resignation of Ramon Calderon over a vote-rigging scandal and will also target Gunners skipper Cesc Fabregas and Kaka, from AC Milan.

The 61-year-old Perez was the architect of Real Madrid's galactico era between 2000 and 2006 and was elected as president on the back of a promise to sign Luis Figo from arch-rivals Barcelona.

And the former Bernabeu chief is hoping the same trick will work twice.

"With Kaka and Fabregas as players and Wenger as coach, Florentino will take Real back to where they should be," the Perez contact said.

Wenger has twice rejected Perez's overtures during his 13-years as Arsenal manager; but the dual role of coach and general manager - which would mean the departure of sporting director Predrag Mijatovic - would mean far greater control at Real than previous coaches have enjoyed.

Many a Madrid president has swept to power on the promise that they will sign some of football's biggest names and have failed to deliver. Calderon promised to lure Kaka and Cesc Fabregas to the Bernabeu during his election campaign but neither arrived.

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