Two weeks ago, everything seemed pretty normal around Real Madrid. It was, in theory, supposed to be a relatively quiet summer. Yes, Los Blancos needed a back-up striker, a central midfielder and perhaps cover at full-back, but the impending arrival of Jude Bellingham would surely quench the need for a marquee summer signing. The return of Fran Garcia, a highly-rated left-back from Rayo Vallecano, also appeared to be a sensible move.
Then, Karim Benzema changed everything, agreeing on a massive deal with Saudi Pro League side Al-Ittihad, leaving Madrid without a recognised striker heading into the 2023-24 season. That presented a real problem for a squad already short on attacking depth. All of a sudden, a tame few weeks have started to look very important.
Signings, then, are needed, and a host of names have already started to crop up. Madrid supposedly hold serious interest in Harry Kane, while they are also said to be enamored with Kai Havertz. There are other possible targets, too, with a handful of big-name strikers potentially available for premium prices this summer.
But who might Madrid actually sign? GOAL takes a look at some of the players Los Blancos could splash the cash on this summer...