Ronald Koeman has told the Mirror that he will not have finished forming his own squad at Everton until two years' time as the club will struggle to attract the right calibre of player until they are back in Europe.
Koeman took over as Toffees boss in June and has made four major first-team signings since his arrival at Goodison Park.
Only two of those transfers have been eight-figure sums, the £12 million paid for Swansea City and Wales captain Ashley Williams and the lucrative £25 million-plus deal for Crystal Palace winger Yannick Bolasie, whilst Idrissa Gana Gueye and Maarten Stekelenburg have also been brought in.
Though Bolasie's deal was a near-club record for Everton, and despite the increased spending power brought about as a result of Farhad Moshiri's takeover, Koeman still believes that the club cannot compete with many in the Premier League financially.
He therefore suggested that it will take two years for his impact on the club to truly be felt as he gradually assembles his squad rather than completely overhauling the playing staff in one go.
He told the Mirror: "Of course if you’re trying to get a player in and you get competition from the big clubs and they play Champions League, of course, most of the time you lose.
"Normally the big teams have more chance to win. What we need to do at Everton is the big project.
"I need two seasons really to get what I think can be the best team for Everton. After this window I like to change things but it’s not possible. Maybe next year, then finally everyone can be happy but the team is strong."
Whilst that suggestion may have a lot to do with managing supporters' expectations, it would still seem fair for fans to hope to see a marked improvement this term.
Koeman worked wonders on a relatively small budget at Southampton, and Idrissa Gueye in particular already looks an excellent addition in central midfield.