Sunderland striker's comments make encouraging reading for Black Cats fans

Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher believes he can use the international break to get back to his best.

Sunderland striker Steven Fletcher has told the Courier that the international break can be of benefit to him, as he has not played as much football as he was hoping to this season.

Fletcher has played 29 times this campaign, but clearly the striker feels that he isn't quite up to speed at the moment.

The 28-year-old has seen competition for places at Sunderland grow, with Connor Wickham, Jermain Defoe and Danny Graham all competing for starting berths in the Black Cats team.

It means that Fletcher has been utilised as a substitute on occasion this term, and he obviously feels that he needs more game time before he feels fully confident.

As a result, the international break, where he is expected to lead the line for his country, has come at the right time.

Fletcher started in Scotland's international friendly against Northern Ireland last night, where they won 1-0, and he says he was pleased to get some minutes under his belt.

"I’m looking to get back on the score sheet as soon as possible,” he said. "It’s been a while. For me tonight was just about getting some minutes under my belt. I’ve not played too much this year so it feels good to get back out there.

“A few of the boys like myself having been playing too much football so it was good to get a few minutes.”

The fact that Fletcher feels this week away can make him sharper should be good news for Sunderland, as they need him back to his best.

The Wearsiders are in need of increasing their attacking threat and having an on-form Fletcher would be sure to help in this respect.

The striker may not have found the net very often this season, but he is a clinical finisher when at the top of his game and Sunderland supporters will hope that he returns from the international break reinvigorated.

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