Nurnberg general manager Martin Bader has admitted the Bundesliga strugglers are likely to sign a defender during the January transfer window.
Sweden international defender Per Nilsson is paired with former West Ham and Middlesbrough player Emanuel Pogatetz in the heart of the defence.
But Bader admits the club - currently sitting in 17th in the Bundesliga table with no wins in their opening 14 games - need back-up in case one of the duo should be unable to feature during the second half of the season as they battle to avoid the drop.
Bader told BILD: "Finding a solution for defence is also about taking good care of those current players we have in that position.
"We need to remain in control of affairs at the back if Per Nilsson or Emanuel Pogatetz should become unable to take part for us at some point."
Meanwhile, Bader feels the club will open up the door for former Germany international midfielder Hanno Balitsch.
The 32-year-old had been a first-team regular at Grundig-Stadion until he was ousted from first-team training by former Nurnberg boss Michael Wiesinger in September.
But he has done well in training with the reserves and may get an opportunity as new manager Gertjan Verbeek seeks to guide the club to safety.
Bader told Nurnberger Zeitung: "Hanno really did everything he could to reset things to zero. Why should we then close the door for him now?
"He could well get back to match action, if he does impress the manager in training."