Injuries to a number of players mean the Hammers boss is on the lookout for new defenders in January but he has been frustrated as moves for Dnipro's Samuel Inkoom and Nancy defender Massadio Haidara failed to materialise.
With his quota of domestic loans taken up by strikers Marouane Chamakh and Andy Carroll, Allardyce is looking abroad for potential recruits.
"We're not making as good progress as I would have liked," said Allardyce. "It has been hugely frustrating. We've been trying in the whole of the window to try and bring in a defender, but not been able to clinch a deal yet.
"That is probably because we have been looking for a short-term deal in loans, as in terms of not permanent deals. I think at this stage of the window everybody wants to, if they are going to release a player, let him go on a permanent basis, not on a short-term loan basis.
"I think that will probably change as the window gets closer to closing and hopefully we will be more successful in our plight to get a defender in at that stage."