Real Madrid coach Jose Antonio Camacho is looking to strengthen his squad after failing to persuade Patrick Vieira to quit Arsenal.
Vieira was close to a switch to the Bernabeu before undergoing a change of heart late last week and deciding to stay at Arsenal.
“It’s obvious that Vieira would have given us extra power in the midfield,” Camacho told Spanish sports daily AS on Monday.
“He’s an outstanding ball-winner, especially in the air from goal kicks and he’s got great physical strength.
“Right now Real are probably not as physically strong as their opponents and that is something we’ve got to improve.
“We will now have to solve the problem by alternative means because our squad is too thin,” he said.
According to reports in Spain, defender and Italy captain Fabio Cannavaro is now Camacho’s numer one transfer target, with Argentine centre back Fabricio Coloccini also one of their targets.
Having missed out on Vieira, Real president Florentino Perez opted to sign England striker Michael Owen from Liverpool.
“Owen will make Real more complete and any player of his quality will always be welcome at the club,” said Camacho.
“The presence of Owen will mean there is even more competition for places and the players will be more anxious to play.”
The Real Madrid coach also said he expected David Beckham to improve after a disappointing first season at the club.
“I am sure he will give a lot more,” he said.
“He’s now adapted to the country, to its customs and to his team mates. He’s much more integrated.
“But now he even understands me when I say things in Spanish. The only thing that bothers him are the paparazzi, who won’t leave him alone, but he is able to stand up to it.”