Fulham boss Scott Parker again downplayed the prospect of bringing in new signings before the end of the January transfer window as he prepares his side for another crunch clash against relegation rivals West Bromwich Albion.

Parker, who had poured cold water on the possibility of adding another attacker in the immediate aftermath of last night’s stalemate at Brighton, told his pre-match press conference at Motspur Park:

“It’s beyond my real control on where we are as a football club in terms of transfers. It’s going to be difficult for us, for many reasons as I’ve said before.”

He was also tight-lipped about Jean-Michael Seri’s rumoured return to Nice on loan and whether the French playmaker’s departure might free up funds for a new signing:

“I’m not up to speed to that in terms of whether that’s really imminent. There’s a possibility that Mika may leave in this window but last time I knew about that it wasn’t imminent in any way.”

Parker was again reluctant to characterise Saturday’s trip to the Hawthorns as a must-win, emphasising just how much points would still be up for grabs in the remainder of the campaign.

“It is a big game for us, a massive game for us and West Brom – do I see it as a definer? Do I see as one which is going to define the season for us? No, I don’t. There’s nineteen games left and we’re five points behind with a game in hand behind Brighton. I understand the game is big, we want to win and get three points.”

The Fulham head coach is not going to underestimate the threat posed by West Brom, who pipped the Whites to automatic promotion from the Championship last season, under new manager Sam Allardyce, who ‘sold me at Newcastle without even seeing me!’.

“Looking at his teams, they have always been very competitive. We fully understand what we will face this weekend. They were two places above us last year. At times this year, both clubs have found it hard. They have invested and brought some good players in. They’ve got quality in their team.”

Parker, who confirmed that only long-term injury absentees Tom Cairney and Terence Kongolo are definitely out, knows that Fulham will need to add a greater attacking threat having shored up their defence in recent months.

“We worked hard on the defence, as a team and a unit to be more solid and the next part of the puzzle is to try and get some goals and win some games. It’s the hardest thing to do, put the ball in the net. Last night I didn’t think we deserved the three points, but we gave ourselves our chance at the end of the game. They’re the fine margins, it is a work in progress. It isn’t that the team are not creating chances. We are not a team that’s struggling in that area. We need to be more clinical.”

He heaped praise on Bobby Decordova-Reid, deployed on the south coast as a left wing-back, for the way in which he has made the step up to the top flight.

“Bobby’s been immense. When he came into the football club last year was a main driver for me in terms of getting him in. Everything you see with Bobby on the football pitch and the way he conducts himself on it and around it is nothing short of superb really. I’m pleased he’s taken to the Premier League the way he has. He’s been pivotal for us and our success so far this year and our turnaround and there’s still more to come from him.”

Parker also had warms words for Aleksandar Mitrovic, who brightened up Fulham’s attack off the bench at Brighton.

“I think it’s fair to say that Aleks at the start of the season struggled a little bit, internationally as well, he missed a penalty. Sometimes getting some air and oxygen can help. I thought he was superb when he came on yesterday. I have no doubt he will have a big impact.”