Charlie Gilmour has needed to show Guy Melamed-esque patience as he fights for his first team chance at St Johnstone.
But he could end up making a Guy Melamed-esque impact when he eventually gets there.
The January signing has only seen a couple of minutes of action as a late substitute in the 3-0 thrashing of Motherwell at Fir Park.
Saints fans should not mistake Gilmour’s lack of game-time for a lack of faith on the part of his manager, however.
And the former Scottish under-21 midfielder with “incredible ability” is still on track to fulfil talent developed in Arsenal’s academy at McDiarmid Park.
“Charlie has incredible ability,” said Perth boss Callum Davidson. “His touch and movement are good.
“He’s a big lad, he’s a box to box midfielder and has a great attitude – so all the attributes are there.
“It has just been a case of getting him up to speed because he was short of fitness when he arrived here.
“He’s suffered a bit from us being unable to get him games because of Covid and in another year we would have been able to get a proper look at him far earlier.
“But there have been no reserve matches and because of the size of squad we have, we can’t arrange bounce games.
“So it’s a bit similar to Guy Melamed when he came in, the opportunities to see what he can do are limited so it takes longer.
“It’s very similar and in terms of playing, he’s technically very good like Guy is.”
Charlie has been patient because he knew that would be the case when he arrived here.
That Gilmour has been progressing on the training ground rather than in the heat of battle hasn’t come as a surprise to the 22-year-old, who was snapped up by Davidson after being released by Norwich City.
“Charlie has been patient because he knew that would be the case when he arrived here,” he said.
“Hopefully we can get him games and part of games between now and the end of the season.
“We signed him with a view to bringing him along and looking towards next season. That was in the back of my mind.”
The Gilmour-type signing is a model that could bring rewards on the pitch for Saints and help sustain the club financially.
“You always want young players coming through and getting ready for the first team,” said Davidson.
“The club has done that very well in recent years, whether that’s players who have come through the youths from a young age like Ali McCann or other ones like Liam Gordon who have been picked up from other clubs.
“At a club like St Johnstone it’s important to carry on that way because it gives us a chance to pick up good quality, work on developing them and then get the benefits.
“We wouldn’t be able to afford an Ali McCann so we have to find them ourselves.”