St Mirren manager Stephen Robinson admitted he lacks a “maverick” figure like Cristiano Ronaldo who can create chances out of nothing.
The Paisley side enjoyed a man advantage for the entirety of the second half of Saturday’s 1-1 draw at McDiarmid Park after St Johnstone had Daniel Phillips sent off late in the opening period.
But the Buddies lacked the cutting edge required to carve open their hosts and required a late Alex Gogic header to salvage a point once Zak Rudden had nodded St Johnstone in front.
Saints listed five teenagers on the bench – as well as Fraser Taylor who turned 20 last week – due to an injury crisis that leaves them without six first-team regulars.
And Robinson conceded it does not give him many options when he is looking for some creative inspiration.
He said: “It’s very difficult unless you have players that can go past people, mavericks so to speak. We don’t have that.
“I don’t know whoever invented that it’s easy to play against 10 men. Unless you’ve got someone like Ronaldo who can win the game on his own!
“You’re looking around for more experience and a few more options to do something, although both kids were good when they came on. LJ (Lewis Jamieson) had a chance and Kieran (Offord) held the ball up for us and gave us a bit more energy.
“We’re looking around and we’ve got teenage centre-halves on the bench and it’s difficult to change things lock, stock and barrel.
“If we had played against 11 men there might have been more space to counter-attack but there wasn’t.”
Robinson’s opposite number, Callum Davidson, was pleased with the resourcefulness of his 10 men as they shut out St Mirren until the 86th minute.
He said: “We were better with 10 men. We worked extremely hard.
“I was just disappointed we couldn’t hold on at the end for three points but I’m delighted with the lads and the point.
“When we went down to 10 men, Stevie May and Nicky Clark led the line really well. From that, the two guys who came on worked equally as hard. I’m really pleased.”