Inter Milan striker Julio Cruz has emerged as a shock target for Real Madrid.

Milan sources say the 34 year-old Argentine centre-forward is wanted by Real sports chief Pedja Mijatovic as they seek stop-gap cover for crocked striker Ruud van Nistelrooy.

Cruz is off contract at the end of this season and wants to leave Inter in January.

Barcelona have also been linked with Cruz, with Lionel Messi recommending his fellow Argie to sports director Txiki Begiristain.