Wigan Athletic boss Steve Bruce admits he was disappointed to sell his stars in January.
"The changes that we've made during the transfer window were not exactly want I wanted to do, but we were in seventh position for the best part of two months and although we've slipped a little, we have to climb back up now," he told skysports.com.
"Can we stick in there? Can we hold on? I hope so.
"The players we sold we were left with very little choice on, since there were four who were out of contract at the end of the season and we had to let them go for the money; all due respect, we are Wigan Athletic. We need to balance the books."
Bruce added: "The money was put back into the squad and hopefully we'll be stronger in the long run.
"So we've invested the vast majority. And then I'll sit down with the chairman over the next couple of months, see what we've got planned for the summer, see what's in the coffers and then we'll go again.
"Before then, we've got the challenge of finishing in the top half, and we're driven, ambitious and confident enough to believe that will happen."