Fulham manager Roy Hodgson has warned Bobby Zamora he may feel the effects of his collarbone injury for the rest of his career.
The Cottagers' top scorer had to come off in the second half of Fulham's 3-2 defeat at Stoke on January 5. Scans revealed the former Spurs and West Ham man had dislocated his collarbone - the same injury that ruled strike partner Andy Johnson out for a month earlier this season.
"It will be a while before he becomes totally pain free, if ever," said Hodgson, who takes his side to Blackburn on Sunday.
"There aren't many players in top level football who have played as many games as Bobby and AJ who go onto the field without some sort of pain or a reminder from an ancient injury. Everyone has to come to terms with that.
"We don't consider that so much as when will he be medically cleared to play the game.
"Then the players have to manage pain barriers and manage to some extent certain aspects of the injury that mean they have to be very careful before they do something."
Zamora's injury means Hodgson is likely to pick Erik Nevland to partner Johnson up front as the Cottagers look to register their second away win in the Barclays Premier League this season.
Hodgson confirmed discussions had begun with Nevland, 32, about extending his contract at the club beyond the summer.
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