Remi Garde admitted he could not be too heartened by a battling away point at West Brom because of the predicament his Aston Villa side are in.
Bottom-of-the-table Villa's unbeaten run was extended to five games in all competitions but they remain nine points adrift of safety in the Barclays Premier League with only 15 fixtures to go following a 0-0 draw at The Hawthorns.
Neither goalkeeper was truly tested in the midlands derby, with the Baggies failing to register a shot on target for the fourth time this term, while the visitors were denied a first-half penalty when Jonas Olsson went through the back of Jordan Ayew.
Frenchman Garde, who is still waiting for his first away win in English football, conceded solitary points are not helpful in their scrap against the drop.
"In terms of the result I'm a little bit disappointed because in our current situation we need more than one point," the Frenchman said.
"Even if an away point is always a good one, we needed more. We tried very hard, especially in the second half, but when you don't score a goal you don't deserve to win, for sure."
Garde refrained from blaming referee Robert Madley for his refusal to award a first-half spot-kick against Olsson.
Replays showed the Swede did not get the ball when he slid in on Ayew, yet the Ghana international's appeal was relatively muted and his manager could also see why Madley had not pointed to the spot.
Asked if he thought they should have been awarded a penalty, Garde replied: "I don't know, maybe, maybe not. It was not so obvious.
"Sometimes you have (these decisions), sometimes you don't; this is the ref...I respect (it)."
The hosts carved out nothing going forward themselves, even after boss Tony Pulis threw on Saido Berahino, Victor Anichebe and Callum McManaman from the bench.
Pulis put that lack of imagination down to a hangover from the busy festive period and credited his team for emerging with a draw despite their shortcomings in the final third.
"Going forward we were disappointing, we just couldn't get things going," he noted. " That's just not one of the players, that's all of us collectively.
"That was a disappointment but when things are not going well, what you need your team to do is work and work and work. That's what they've done today; they've ground a result out and at times you need to do that.
"We've had eight games in the last four weeks and the last three of them have been away from home. We looked a little bit tired.
"Our front players - we needed a little bit more off them going forward. We didn't get that. But, as a group, defensively I thought we were very, very good. I said to them afterwards that I'm really, really pleased with them. We weren't at our best today but we never lost."