Gillingham boss Justin Edinburgh believes the crazy finances at the top level are beginning to filter through.
Edinburgh was unable to add an additional striker to his squad before the window closed and was met with some “astronomical” wage demands.
Over £1 billion was spent by the top English clubs during the latest transfer window and even players on the fringes are being paid top money.
Edinburgh has three senior strikers in Jay Emmanuel-Thomas, Cody McDonald and Rory Donnelly. The manager is confident he has enough but would still have liked more.
“You are always looking and you can never have enough strikers,” said Edinburgh.
“We made enquiries with one or two but wages of these Championship and Premier League players is quite astronomical, and it is as if League 1 and League 2 clubs are suffering because of money that is in the higher levels.
“Those clubs are paying them and they want to recoup 50-60% of the wages and that is a huge amount.
“It is difficult to find that money to bring those players to the club. The money in the game does have a knock-on effect.”
Free agents can still be signed and the availability of former QPR and Nottingham Forest striker Dexter Blackstock caught the manager’s eye. But on Monday he signed a three-year deal for Championship side Rotherham.
Edinburgh said: “It is easy saying you need a player but getting the right player who is going to make you better is difficult.
“There is a lot of money being spent at this level, from every club and it is difficult to compete.”
Gills striker Jay Emmanuel-Thomas is in the running to win the SkyBet League 1 goal-of-the-month award for August.
The 25-year-old has been nominated for his stunning strike during the come from behind 3-2 win at Shrewsbury on August 27.
Emmanuel-Thomas picked up the ball just inside the Shrewsbury half before beating his man and rifling a 30-yard shot into the top right-hand corner. This was the second of his double on the day as Gills came from 2-0 down to triumph.
The Gills man is up against Bradford's Mark Marshall and Jay Spearing, of Bolton Wanderers.