Cardiff City manager Mick McCarthy spoke of his disappointment after his Bluebirds side put on a spirited display against Fulham but ultimately fell to a seventh straight defeat.

After a bright start, Fulham overpowered Cardiff at the start of the second half and the Bluebirds simply couldn't recover.

It was understood that McCarthy would get the chance to turn this dismal run around after the South Wales derby defeat with games against the Cottagers and Neil Warnock's Middlesbrough on Saturday.

With Wednesday's defeat sinking Cardiff down to 21st in the Championship table, it all looks very bleak at the minute. But McCarthy knows the score. All he can do, he said, was keep turning up and preparing his troops for Boro this weekend.

"It leaves me on the back end of a really horrible run of results," he said when asked where this defeat leaves him.

"And if football is true to its usual stuff then we know what happens.

"I came in on the back of a defeat by Swansea, we've certainly had a much better performance, and I'll be doing exactly the same for Middlesbrough unless I'm told different.

"I can’t do any more than what I’m doing. I certainly can’t try harder than I am. TC and I are giving it everything."

McCarthy has spoken about meetings with CEO Ken Choo Tan and chairman Mehmet Dalman, but when asked whether he had been in talks with owner Vincent Tan, he replied: "I've had two or three conversations with Vincent, yes, but you will appreciate that, the fact that I've had them, I'm not going to tell you what was said."

It's understandable that this awful run of form has had an impact on the manager off the pitch, too.

McCarthy, though, said he has everyone behind him and rooting for him to spark some sort of upsurge in fortunes in the coming days.

"Everyone who asks me how I'm doing, I say, 'Great, my family are well, everything is fine except football results'," the manager said.

"Unfortunately for me, 90 percent of my life is football and football results, so you can tell how I'm feeling.

"Thankfully, I've got a really good support network with my wife, Fiona, and everyone else behind me. And the staff and the players, they proved that today.

"I was asked at the weekend if they had stopped playing for me, if I'd lost the dressing room, which I think is ridiculous, and that tonight showed I certainly haven't.

"But I feel pretty lousy because I don't like getting beaten."

The Fulham performance at least provided some encouragement, the first half certainly.

On the game, McCarthy said: "It was a vast improvement on performance. The players know that as well.

"If we perform like that against other teams, we’ll win games but I’m afraid Fulham were too good and too strong for us.

"In terms of having a go and their effort, I can’t criticise that at all. It was a much better performance."

A highlight for many was the performance of Rubin Colwill, who shone on he left-hand side for much of the game.

He was replaced by Kieron Evans, who also had his best game in a City shirt.

McCarthy praised the impact the youngsters had at Craven Cottage, but knows more must be done if they are to dig themselves out of this dreadful mire they find themselves in.

"We know Rubin has been in and everyone loves him, that was his best performance since Nottingham Forest, he grew into that," McCarthy said.

"And Kieron Evans, I was delighted with his performance.

"There are some really good young players at the club coming through. Sam Bowen I thought had a decent game, up against a really good player, [Jean Michael] Seri. And I think there's Eli King coming through and other bodies.

"There are good younguns, but we need some soldiers at the minute to get a result from somewhere."