Twelve months and 42 players into his reign as national boss, Berti Vogts appears to be no nearer finding 11 capable of restoring Scotland to the top tier of world football.
Wednesday's 2-0 defeat at home to the Republic of Ireland was his seventh loss in his first 11 games.
His was greeted two days later, on his first anniversary, with newspaper headlines suggesting that he - and not the dearth of talent currently hampering his cause - was to blame for yet another alarming performance.
As with England's Sven Goran Eriksson, the media appear to be giving Vogts one more game before finally calling for his head to roll.
Christian Dailly continues to be a stalwart
Indeed, he admits himself that mistakes are still being made in the preparation of the team.
There is no room time for experimentation, his next opportunity to prove his worth as a coach being the European Championship visit to Hampen of Iceland in March.
After an extensive search for any talent with remotely tartan blood, only Birmingham City winger Paul Devlin has emerged during Vogts' reign as a possible new force on the international stage.
Stevie Crawford was given a re-call and does not look out of place among those from more fashionable clubs.
Steven Thompson won a move from Dundee United to Rangers on the back of showing some promise in dark blue and, once he is over his injury and suspension problems, could make his mark alongside the Dunfermline Athletic striker.
Leeds United's Dominic Matteo and Everton's David Weir, neither of whom matched club form with their country, retired from the international scene.
Defender Lee Wilkie, who had been farmed out on loan to Notts County, was plucked from obscurity and looked the part in their absence until being strangely relegated to the Futures side instead of facing Republic of Ireland.
It is to that development squad - the most radical of Vogts' reforms - and to the Under-21s where Scotland must look for the brightest glimmers of hope.
Vogts will hope that the nurturing of the likes of Motherwell forward James McFadden, Celtic striker Shaun Maloney and Hibernian pair Ian Murray and Garry O'Connor can be swift enough to save his skin.
On the ball
Robert Douglas (Celtic): has become number one goalkeeper but has been out of action after a hernia operation.
Barry Ferguson (Rangers): midfielder has been in impressive form for the Scottish Premier League leaders but has yet to repeat it at international level under Vogts.
Paul Lambert (Celtic): libero was coaxed out of international retirement, was excellent in the defeat of Iceland, but age appears to be catching up with him even at club level.
Christian Dailly (West Ham United): automatic pick for his country but is a member of one of the English Premiership's worst defence is not a commanding presence at the back.
Maurice Ross (Rangers): establishing himself as a regular in Rangers' defence and should feature in the Scotland squad for years to come as a full-back, wing-back or in central defence.
Gary Naysmith (Everton): a threat going forward, sometimes suspect in defence but should be a regular at full-back or wing-back.
Don Hutchison (West Ham Utd): just returned from serious injury but is now the wrong side of 30 and it remains to be seen if he can again become a top-class goal threat.
Steven Thompson (Rangers): had a less than prolific goalscoring record with Dundee United but showed promise at international level and should improve further at Rangers.
Goalkeeper Neil Sullivan's form has suffered
(Rangers): the tricky winger has been plagued with injury but often flatters to deceive at international level.
(Dunfermline Athletic): has proved inspirational up front against lesser opposition but has so far struggled against better nations.
(Birmingham City): newcomer who could become a major player due to his pace and willingness to take on defences.
(Hearts): has been unlucky with injury and illness but is admired by Vogts for his organisational skills in defence.
On the fringes
Neil Sullivan (Tottenham Hotspur): no longer first-choice goalkeeper with his club through injury and his international chances took a knock with a poor performance against Ireland.
Paul Gallacher (Dundee United): excellent performance against Ireland should ensure he remains a regular in the squad.
James McFadden (Motherwell): much-hyped forward with great potential but with a moody and hot-headed streak that has led Vogts to so far restrict him to Under-21 level.
Lee Wilkie (Dundee): looked commanding and comfortable at international level but was dropped from the squad to face Ireland.
Russell Anderson (Aberdeen): only defender to emerge with credit from the defeat by Ireland but suffers from playing with in a struggling club side.
Scott Dobie (West Bromwich Albion): scored on his debut against South Korea but has looked international class since.
Stephen Caldwell (Newcastle United): is hampered by a lack of regular first-team action at his club and struggled against Ireland.
Jamie Smith (Celtic): looked lively coming on a substitute against Ireland but has had few opportunities at club or national level.
Stephen Crainey (Celtic): emerged with a bang for his club against Rangers last season but has returned to Under-21 action with club and country.
Gary Caldwell (Newcastle Utd): suffered the same fate as Crainey.
Crainey has slipped out of contention
(Aberdeen): was sent back to the Under-21s for being too nervous for international football.
(Nottingham Forest): composed passer of the ball but has failed to make the transition from the Under-21s to the seniors.
(Hibernian): only given a brief chance against Canada but is a consistently exciting talent for his club.
(Sunderland): was Vogts' big hope for a tall target man, but the lumbering Sunderland reserve has slipped out of the reckoning.
(Hibernian): was too raw in becoming one of the youngest ever to play for Scotland, but his fine club performances mean his time will surely come again.
On the way out?
Graham Alexander (Preston North End): clever defender who looked like grabbing his international chance late in his career but whose performances have slipped.
Robbie Stockdale (Middlesbrough): hard-working former England Under-21 international has been hit by injury but has shown poor distribution.
Scot Gemmill (Everton): reliable midfielder who appears to complete his Scotland career having always been no more than a squad player.
Jackie McNamara (Celtic): another reliable midfielder who has been unlucky not to win regular places with club and country.
Colin Cameron (Wolves): has been a rare choice for Vogts despite his forward-thinking midfield play being a favourite of predecessor Craig Brown.
Scott Severin (Hearts): Vogts appears to have decided that hard work is not enough to make the midfielder international class.
Out in the cold
Dominic Matteo (Leeds Utd): injury prevented him proving himself at international level and limited his appearances under Vogts to the defeat by France. He has now retired from international football.
David Weir (Everton): retired in a huff after he and Dailly were blamed by Vogts for the dismal defending in the Faroe Islands.
Gary Holt (Norwich): substituted in error in France after just 17 minutes on the pitch, the midfielder has not been picked since.
Derek McInnes (West Bromwich Albion): only given two brief substitutes' chances before being discarded.
Callum Davidson (Leicester City): a couple of substitute appearances in October.
Paul Dickov (Leicester City): played out of position on the wing during the Faroe Islands debacle.
Allan Johnston (Middlesbrough): lack of pace at international level told as he was discarded after the Faroes debacle.
Dougie Freedman (Crystal Palace): the striker was only given one chance - as a winger against France.
Warren Cummings (Chelsea): one brief appearance as substitute for the wide man.