Steven Fletcher expects an eventful summer at Sunderland, with the futures of both Dick Advocaat and several players in question.
Sunderland hope to persuade Advocaat to remain as head coach over the next 72 hours after his short-term tenure in charge of the Black Cats expired following yesterday’s 3-1 season-ending defeat at Chelsea.
We’ve reacted to him because he’s given us the belief. He’s brought the best out of us.Steven Fletcher
But Advocaat is not the only name who could leave the Stadium of Light before the start of next season.
The loan deals of Sebastian Coates, Ricky Alvarez and Santiago Vergini have expired – albeit there is a permanent move in place for the latter – while Wes Brown and Anthony Reveillere are out of contract.
There could also be further departures, with Fletcher one of those in question, as he approaches the final 12 months of his Sunderland contract.
Fletcher said: “It’s down to the manager now and the board speaking to him and how it works out.
“I’m looking forward to seeing what happens.
“There will be a lot happening in the summer.
“There’ll be a lot of people leaving too, so it will be interesting to see what happens.”
Fletcher hopes that Advocaat is not one of those who departs, though, after fulfilling his remit of keeping Sunderland in the Premier League.
“He’s a hero with the Sunderland fans for keeping us up,” said the Scotland international.
“We’ve reacted to him because he’s given us the belief.
“He’s brought the best out of us.
“He fills us all with confidence. He talks to you individually, which is a good thing.
“When you have a good man-manager like he is, it makes a massive difference.”
Despite defeat to the champions, Fletcher ended his campaign on a positive note after finding the net in a Sunderland shirt for the first time since November’s win at Crystal Palace.
Fletcher spurned a golden chance to add to his tally in the second half, as Sunderland tested Jose Mourinho’s men and created several clear-cut opportunities.
“It’s been a while, so it was good to get on the scoresheet,” he added.
“We knew going there that it was going to be hard with them winning the league.
“They keep the ball for fun, and they’re nice to watch, even when you’re playing against them.
“But I thought we put in a good performance.
“We’ve got a new way of playing under the new manager, we’re creating chances.
“As a striker, you want chances, so that’s been good.
“If he does stay, that would be great for us next year.”