Mark Cooper insists Kettering Town will have to accept losing out on players to clubs with bigger budgets after revealing he missed out on one his transfer targets.
The Poppies boss had got to the stage where he was due to meet former Queens Park Rangers midfielder Stefan Bailey – who had looked set to sign a one-year contract with the Blue Square North champions last week.
However, the player failed to show and two days later signed a one-year deal with Blue Square Premier rivals Grays Athletic to become their ninth summer signing.
And while the situation with 20-year-old Bailey left Cooper frustrated, he conceded it is a problem the Poppies may have to get used to.
"I was due to meet him last Tuesday after we had agreed a one-year deal," the Kettering manager said.
"He didn't turn up and then signed for a club who were offering him more money. He has gone there for that reason and we can't moan about it.
"Yes, I am disappointed with the way it was handled. But what has
happened is a fact of life and we just have to carry on working hard to try and bring the best players in who are within the budget."
Cooper, however, remains
undeterred in his search for fresh blood and he is confident of landing at least two or three more players before the transfer window slams shut at the end of August.
Striker Nathan Smith and midfielder Dwane Lee have already signed while Alfie Potter is expected to
complete a season-long loan move from Peterborough United.
Cooper added: "We are looking through our targets and talking to players all the time.
"Those people who are panicking should remember we already have around 16 or 17 players here so I am only looking for two or three more.
"But I don't just want your run-of- the-mill Conference player who always finds a club but, perhaps, doesn't run himself into the ground for the cause.
"I am searching for something a bit different."