Brendan Rodgers says Leicester City were priced out of buying a replacement for Harry Maguire, who has earned praise from his former manager for his conduct while he waited to join Manchester United.
Maguire became the world's most expensive defender on last week when United's reported bid of £80 million ($144 million) was accepted by Leicester, ending a transfer saga that lasted throughout the transfer window.
City spent the final few days of the window looking to fill the void left by Maguire, with Bournemouth's Nathan Ake and James Tarkowski of Burnley said to have been their two main targets.
But Rodgers claimed the Foxes were quoted prices that did not reflect the value of the club's targets and is hoping others already in the squad can now step up.
"We looked but the market proved too difficult. But we're equally comfortable working with the players we have," Rodgers said.
"It was always going to be a very difficult market. But the club prepared for that eventuality a year ago by bringing in two outstanding young centre-halves in Caglar [Soyuncu] and Filip [Benkovic].
"We knew we had those guys there, along with Jonny Evans, who is a top centre-half. Wes Morgan as well, who is a great leader and great captain."
Maguire had been the subject of intense interest from United prior to the big-money deal going through this week, while Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola also admitted to being a big fan of the England international.
Speaking ahead of Leicester's opening Premier League match of the season against Wolves on Sunday, Rodgers was keen to thank the outgoing defender for the professionalism he showed in the final stages of his Foxes stint.
"We lost a very important player in Harry, who was a very good man," he said.
"What Harry did over the course of the summer was show how to conduct yourself with professionalism and respect for your club and your team-mates. He showed that good guys get what they want in the end."