The Fulham board are fully behind Slavisa Jokanovic’s no-nonsense stance in the ongoing stand off over Chris Martin’s loan from Derby County.
The Scottish striker has refused to play for Fulham after being offered a new contract by Derby County last week and has made himself unavailable for Sunday’s FA Cup third round tie at Cardiff City after pulling out of the two most recent league fixtures against Reading and Brighton and Hove Albion. Derby boss Steve McClaren has said he would welcome Martin back to the Rams, but Fulham would have to agree to end the Scottish international’s season-long loan at Craven Cottage – something which Jokanovic has passionately insisted he will not do.
Jokanovic reiterated his own uncompromising position at today’s press conference ahead of the Cardiff game, telling the assembled journalists:
You know my position. My position is the club’s and he will stay with us. Yes (I’ve spoken to the owners and they agree with my stance on the issue). Generally this situation takes up so much energy and I have more important things to think about right now. I’m coaching 23 players. I don’t have any intention to change my decision.
Martin claims to be injured, but Jokanovic says that the club’s medical staff have been unable to find any injury that would rule him out of representing Fulham.
He is still injured – I am not a doctor. I am a football coach. My opinion is my opinion. I haven’t gone to university to study it.