MANAGER Eddie Howe confirmed winger Ryan Fraser has played his final game for Cherries and added: “I only want players who are fully focused on the relegation battle.”

The club on Wednesday stated the Scotland international had declined a short-term contract to keep him at Vitality Stadium until the end of the season.

The 26-year-old’s current deal expires on June 30, meaning he would be eligible to play at home against Crystal Palace tomorrow (7.45pm) and Wolves on Wednesday.

But Howe revealed he has made the call to leave out Fraser, stressing he needed a “nine-game commitment”.

Asked about Fraser at this morning’s press conference, Cherries boss Howe said: “I don’t think I was particularly surprised by his decision (not to extend his deal).

“It’s been clear to us as a club for some time that Ryan was not going to sign a new contract with us.

“The first thing to say on this is no-one could have predicted what would have happened with the virus, the season shutting down and then being extended.

“Ryan’s then found himself in a very difficult position because of that.

“He has now played his last game for the football club. He won’t be involved with us for the last nine games.

“I only want players who are fully focused on the relegation battle that we have ahead and I’m looking forward to doing that with my squad.”

Fraser joined Cherries under boss Howe in January 2013, having signed from Aberdeen for around £400,000.

He played 208 times in all competitions for the Dorset club, scoring 24 goals.

The winger has been linked with the likes of Arsenal, Tottenham, Everton and Galatasaray among others in recent weeks.

Quizzed on whose call it was to leave Fraser out of the squad, Howe replied: “It was my decision.

“These are the most important games this football club has had in recent times and we need everybody in the same position mentally, fighting tooth and nail giving everything for the football club.

“And Ryan, due to his contractual situation, can’t commit to that.

“Two games for us wasn’t going to make a difference for us. We needed a nine-game commitment and, unfortunately, he couldn’t give that at this moment in time.

“We go ahead with the squad we have and we’re looking forward to the strongest squad I’ve had to pick from, hopefully that will show in the games we have.”