Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino said it is difficult for his team to compete with Manchester City, Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool in the transfer market.
Pochettino's men managed to finish third in the Premier League last season and they are currently fifth in the table after last week's 1-0 loss to United at Old Trafford.
Tottenham invested heavily to bring Moussa Sissoko, Victor Wanyama and Vincent Janssen to White Hart Lane for the 2016-17 season but fans have been warned not to expect any big-money arrivals during the January window.
"For us, it is very difficult to sign players like our opponents," Pochettino said ahead of Wednesday's game against Hull City.
"When you compare Tottenham with Liverpool, Chelsea, [Manchester] City, [Manchester] United and Arsenal, in this moment it is very difficult to compete with them.
"The challenge is to be clever and to take risks -- and as we know, when you take risks in football, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose."
Pochettino, though, expects Tottenham to challenge the elite once their new stadium is complete ahead of the 2018-19 campaign.
He added: "It's not about money, it's how you invest the money. Now the market is crazy. You can see how the value of players has increased. It's true you need to be clever. You need to be imaginative and creative. And try to fight for good players at a very good price.
"When you're building a stadium like we're building you are not only focused to improve the team. You need to be focused on improving the team but at the same time you're spending money to create a massive stadium which will be one of the best stadiums in Europe. We needed that.
"With the new stadium, Tottenham will be one of the best teams in the world, for sure. But now we need to be creative and sometimes take a risk and when you take a risk sometimes you win and sometimes you don't."