Everton boss David Moyes is all but resigned to defeat in his attempts to bring in new faces this month.
The Scot has not completely given up hope of bolstering his small squad but concedes time is fast running out as Monday's transfer deadline approaches.
Moyes was limited to free transfers last summer and has been forced to look at the loan market only during the current window due to a lack of funds.
Moyes wants to increase numbers but when asked if he was optimistic about doing so he replied, "Probably not".
Speaking at his weekly press conference, he added: "I have got a wee bit of hope but not a big one. We are in a loan market, looking for loan players, and where are you going to get them at this moment in time?
"It needs to be people who I think could make the difference, or people whose experience might help us. Overall we are looking to try to do that but to get them is difficult."