Bayern Munich could beat Arsenal and Chelsea to the signing of Sami Khedira after the Bavarian's midfielder Javi Martinez was ruled out until the new year.
Martinez will be out until at least January after injuring his knee in the 2-0 German Supercup defeat by Borussia Dortmund.
It means manager Pep Guardiola could turn to World Cup winner Khedira to provide cover for the Spaniard, according to reports in Spanish daily AS.
The Bundesliga champions' move would be another twist in the transfer saga of Khedira, who was thought to be close to signing for Arsenal after lowering his wage demands.
Chelsea have also been linked with the midfielder, with manager Jose Mourinho, who knows Khedira from his time in charge of Real Madrid, admitting his squad could still benefit from additions.
"We have the squad that we want to have. We don't say it's perfect, we don't say it's the best. There is no manager in the world that says his squad is perfect and could not improve in certain positions," Sky Sports quoted Mourinho saying.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has also said he is willing to spend more money this summer, even though he discounted the chances of signing Khedira as Jack Wilshire is back to full fitness.
Khedira watched from the sidelines as his Real Madrid teammates defeated Sevilla 2-0 in the Uefa Super Cup final in Cardiff as Los Blancos manager Carlo Ancelotti prepares for life without him.
The 27-year-old German has been heading towards the Bernabeu exit ever since the £24m transfer of Bayern midfielder Toni Kroos.
Khedira has one year remaining on his contract and Madrid are keen to sell him this summer rather than lose him for nothing once his contract expires.
If Bayern cannot tempt Khedira, German newspaper Bild claims they will move for another Chelsea target, this time Madrid's French international Raphael Varane.