Scott Parker expects a “hard conversation” about his Fulham future – but not in the middle of a Premier League relegation scrap.
Caretaker manager Parker revealed he is already making long-term plans at Craven Cottage as the club slip towards an instant return to the Sky Bet Championship.
The Cottagers are 13 points adrift of safety, with seven games to play ahead of Saturday’s home clash with Manchester City.
A defeat to City followed by a loss at Watford on Tuesday could see their relegation confirmed next week should other results go against them, but former England midfielder Parker insists Fulham will not give up the fight.
“At the present moment in time my focus is every game as it comes,” said Parker.
“We’re coming out of a tough, tough season, and when the dust settles we’ll have a hard conversation and work out where the rights and wrongs were really.
“But from my point of view it’s out of my control at this present time, and the only thing I can do is give a good impression, and leave a mark.
“And I said it at the start as well, I’m treating this as a long-term role, in the sense that I was here a long time as a player, and now I’m back I believe in what I’m doing, what I’m trying to create, and at the end of it we’ll see where it takes us.
“But ultimately I want to leave this club in a better place than I found it.
“There have been conversations about next season, and that’s because clubs are planning now for pre-season, for signings.
“I’m involved in those conversations, so ultimately we’ll see where that takes us.
“We all know and understand where we are (on relegation) but at the same time, one result can springboard.
“So while it’s still possible we’ll fight and drive as much as we can to finish the season on a high.”
Parker replaced Claudio Ranieri at the end of February, but the Cottagers have lost all three matches since.
Ex-Chelsea and Fulham midfielder Parker admitted he has spent the international break devising a plan to contain Pep Guardiola’s rampant City side.
“You certainly have to adapt to face City, and we’ve been working on that over the last 10 days and now for the next couple of days too,” he said.
“They are well-coached, well-drilled, and we’ve been trying to give the lads as much information as possible for the challenges we’re going to face.
“They are that good that we can put all the scenarios in place, but you’ve still got to face them.
“We all understand the challenge ahead, fantastic players, team and along with a manager who will arguably go down as one of the greatest as well.”