Parker working hard

Gianfranco Zola has said Scott Parker is working hard in a bid to figure again this season as the midfielder continues to receive treatment for a groin injury.

The 28-year-old has been one of the club's most consistent performers this season but has not played since the 1-1 draw at Blackburn Rovers on 21 March. Zola said: "I don't know if he will play again this season to be honest. He is working very hard on his fitness so that he can play again this season.

"The problem is he has a chronic inflammation in the groin and this has caused him problems. I had the same problem he has now many years ago. It is tough because one day you feel OK and the day after you feel bad. Then maybe in five or six days it might be better.

"I am not worried and I am sure he will get over this. I'm just a bit disappointed as he's one of our key players and obviously to be missing him at this part of the season is no good for us."

Zola offered encouragement to the England international who has made 52 appearances in claret and blue since arriving at the club in summer 2007. "Once I sorted it out I never had problems again. I gave Scott all my knowledge about it, but everyone is taking care of him. You have to be patient and keep working."