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Cherries: Don't write us off says legend Fletcher
Fletcher urged the Cherries faithful to stick with the promotion-chasing team after Eddie Howe’s men had dropped out of the League One play-off zone.
Three successive defeats saw Cherries slide to seventh and led to some doubters voicing their concerns about the Dorset club’s Championship quest.
But with Cherries just three points adrift of the top two in a fiercely-contested title race, Fletcher served a timely reminder of how far the team have come.
He told the Daily Echo: “I train with these boys day in, day out and the ability is the best I have known since I have been here.
“I know we have got the capabilities. If people want to write us off, so be it, but we are in the mix.
“Three months ago, people would have laughed at you if we had said when we were 21st in the league that we were going to be in the mix come the end of February.
That is the positive we have got to look at.
“If people want to write us off, that is up to them, we don’t take any notice of that.
“Our true supporters know how well we have done and they have backed us all the way. I am sure they are going to have the belief that the players, management and staff have got from now until the end of the season with 33 points to play for.
“The supporters have been with us ever since Eddie came back. They have turned up in their numbers and backed the players 100 per cent home and away. That is all we can ask from the supporters from now on – to try to get with us even more through this little sticky patch.
“We know we have got to go on another run – we are not blind to it or trying to bury our head in the sand.
But we have proved that we are capable of doing it so we have just got to have that positive attitude that we can do it again.”
Fletcher added: “We still talk about promotion among the players in the changing room.
“We believe we are one of the better teams in the league and we know the ability we have got in the squad. We are a tight-knit group and that isn’t going to change.”
Speaking after Tuesday’s defeat against Coventry City, boss Howe said: “I am sure people in the league, perhaps even some of our own supporters, will doubt us or write us off. That doesn’t concern me.
“What concerns me is the attitude of the dressing room and I know I have got a good dressing room with talented players, so there is a long way to go.”
Meanwhile, Harry Arter will miss Cherries’ next two games through suspension after collecting his 10th booking of the season against Coventry.