Young midfielder Will Hughes looks to be losing his battle to be fit for Derby County's trip to Watford
WILL Hughes remains an injury doubt for Derby County's trip to Watford on Saturday.
The 17-year-old midfielder missed Tuesday's draw against Bolton Wanderers due to a groin strain.
It was the first game he had not featured in all season and he is struggling to be fit.
"Saturday might be a bit too soon for Will, we will see," said manager Nigel Clough.
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"There has not been too much improvement this week with his injury. If he doesn't make Watford, we will look to the Crystal Palace game.
"The injury is probably a combination of things with him – the fatigue and the stress on his body playing 35 games this season at 17.
"We will have to probably manage him for the last couple of months of the season and he will maybe miss a training session here and there."
Clough felt Hughes was missed against Bolton.
"We have a different side when we play Craig Bryson in there," said Clough.
"You get his energy, his running, his joining in with the front two but you just miss Will getting on the ball and making little angles to receive the ball off the centre-halves.
"We missed his guile, his ability to find space and pick a pass."