Jack Lester says financial constraints made it difficult to recruit players in January.
The manager was responding to criticism of the club’s transfer window signings, a number of whom have failed to make an impact as of yet.
Giles Coke was injured on his debut, which came after a two-year injury layoff, while Dylan Mottley-Henry made two appearances before requiring a hernia operation.
Louis Dodds has started just a handful of games and fellow new boys Sid Nelson, Josh Kay, George Smith, Alex Whitmore and Zavon Hines have all found themselves dropped since joining.
Lester called it a ‘difficult window.’
“You’ve got no money to sign players so you can only get people that people don’t want, if you can afford them.
“I did the January window last season at Forest, it’s a very difficult window without any money.
“I don’t think anyone has really picked up players and the ones we were in competition for were going to League One.
“When it came to a choice of us and someone in the top three, we’re in the bottom two .
“The only thing you could have done was sold Kristian Dennis and used that money to buy somebody else.
“But for the money we were going to get, you couldn’t get anyone better than Kristian.”
Lester believes the loss Mottley-Henry has been costly, but insists there’s time for his signings to come good.
“Obviously we wanted some wide players, Dylan was a player that really had impressed me, he was the one I thought would stretch teams and open things up (but) he came with a bit of a hernia.
“There’s time for players to contribute and be a hero, but time is running out.”
You’re judged in football, you get judged, that will never change. The only way you get a good report is by playing well and contributing.
Stop goals, create goals, score goals, I always talk to the players about that.
If you’re not doing any of those three things you’re not contributing to a game.