Sport Football Eric Cantona [h=1]Eric Cantona tries to gather support to launch French presidential bid [/h] Former Manchester United player has written to mayors Cantona needs signatures of 500 elected officials to run reddit this Associated Press guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 10 January 2012 00.38 GMT Article history Eric Cantona has launched a bid to run in this year's French presidential elections. Photograph: Danny Martindale/Getty Images The former Manchester United striker Eric Cantona is trying to gather enough support to enable him to run in this year's French presidential election, according to a newspaper report. Cantona, who once called on people to empty their bank accounts in protest at the global financial crisis, has reportedly written to the mayors of France seeking their backing. The 45-year-old, who is considered one of United's greatest ever players, needs the signatures of 500 elected officials before the end of next month to run. The newspaper Libération published a copy of the letter Cantona sent to mayors around France on its website. In it Cantona pledges to fight against social inequality if given the chance. "I am a committed citizen," Cantona wrote. "This commitment obliges me to speak up, more seriously than usual, but also with a keen sense of my responsibility, at a time when our country is faced with difficult choices for its future." Along with his undoubted football skills, the former France international gained notoriety throughout his career for his unorthodox attitude, outspoken comments and unpredictable behaviour.