Scott Parker says it is touch and go whether Aleksandar Mitrovic will be available for the trip to Watford on Tuesday night – a match that could see the Whites relegated.
The Serbian striker was unable to play in Saturday’s 2-0 home defeat by Manchester City, having returned from international duty with an existing stomach muscle injury further strained.
The Whites failed to get a shot on target against the Premier League champions and looked toothless without him. A defeat in midweek would confirm their demotion.
“Alex has been struggling for a few weeks now with an ongoing issue,” said caretaker boss Parker.
“He obviously played for Serbia in the week – a tough game against Portugal – and he came back and didn’t have a chance today.
“Whether we can get him right and turn him around for Tuesday is probably going to be on a day to day basis to see where we are with him.
“We’re trying to get some treatment into him but really I couldn’t make a call about whether he’ll be ready for Tuesday or not.”
Whether Mitrovic makes it or not, Fulham are surely just playing for pride now, and Parker says he is not thinking about getting the wins he surely needs to persuade the hierarchy to upgrade him from caretaker to full time manager next season.
“On a personal level, of course, I’m in a position where it’s been a tough season and I’ve been given the reins for these remaining games and it’s difficult,” he said.
“But I’m not really thinking about myself in this situation, I’m thinking about the team and us trying to get some results and get a bit of credibility really.
“I’m more bothered about the team. I want the team to show and the players to show what they can do really. At times this year, we’ve showed glimpses and certainly we’ve shown glimpses in the last three, albeit very tough games.
“There are six games left and while it’s still mathematically possible, I think we all understand the predicament and where we lie.
“It’s a tough ask, of course, the main focus now is we push and end the season on a positive after what was been obviously a disappointing campaign.”
Parker refused to be overly critical about his side’s performance against City given the quality of the opposition.
“I thought the lads were brave, certainly in the first half,” he said. “One-nil down after five minutes, you can fold a bit, but overall it was a difficult afternoon, which we recognised.
“It’s quite easy, when you’re playing against a world class team like Man City, to go and hide. I know we’ve lost and individual errors have cost us but I was pleased with certain parts.”