Remi Garde says Aston Villa's financial position was "not as clear" as it is now when he agreed to become manager.
Deadline Day passed without any new arrivals at Villa after approaches for Seydou Doumbia, Loic Remy, Mathieu Debuchy and Wahbi Khazri came to nothing.
When the dust settles Garde will have to oversee a relegation battle with the same squad that has won just 13 points from 23 Premier League games this season.
And the Frenchman has made it clear he is unhappy with the lack of signings.
"Maybe it was not as clear when I signed, but it's something that I don't want to discuss too much," Garde said of Villa's transfer plans.
"I understand that you cannot carry on doing the same things when you have not been as successful as you have wanted. I cannot say the club hasn't done everything they could. It wouldn't be fair.
"I'm not happy about this situation. I am not stupid and saying we need nobody.
"Some people have to be brave enough to say what have we done wrong in the past and what we should be doing now to stop that and to be better, maybe not in the next months but the next season or in two or three years."
Garde succeeded Tim Sherwood at Villa in November and has won just two of 15 games in charge.