Cherries boss Lee Bradbury says he would consider allowing Steve Fletcher to go out on loan but insists the veteran striker is still part of his plans.

Fletcher has been restricted to four brief substitute appearances since stepping down as Bradbury’s assistant at the start of November.

The 39-year-old, who was unavailable for four games in December due to a hamstring injury and illness, failed to make Cherries’ 16-man squad for the league wins over Wycombe.

Fletcher came off the bench to grab a dramatic late equaliser at Walsall 12 days ago and also played his part as Cherries came from behind to beat Notts County on Saturday.

But with Bradbury having made no secret of the fact he is keen to add another striker during the transfer window, Fletcher’s involvement could become even more infrequent.

Bradbury told the Daily Echo: “If Fletch wasn’t getting any game-time, I would treat him the same as everyone else. He was in the squad against Notts County on merit. He scored a great equaliser for us at Walsall and deserved to be in the squad.

“If he came to see me about it and if he wasn’t getting enough game-time then I would certainly look at it for him but I wouldn’t really like to say either way at this moment in time.”

Bradbury’s comments come after presenter George Gavin – speaking on Sky Sports’ Football League Weekend on Friday – suggested several league clubs had been keen to take Fletcher on loan.

However, studio guest Simon Grayson, the Leeds United manager, said on the show: “I think Lee will want to keep hold of him. He can certainly make an impact whether it is off the bench or in a starting position.”

Meanwhile, Cherries skipper Adam Barrett could be sidelined for up to three months after a scan revealed he had torn his hamstring.

Barrett, who was plagued by hamstring problems over the festive period, finally succumbed to the injury during Cherries’ victory over Notts County.

The 32-year-old, who was forced off after just nine minutes against the Magpies, told the club website: “I hurt my hamstring again on Saturday but it was in a different spot to before.

“I felt it in the opening couple of minutes and then, a few minutes later, I felt it pop. There is a little bit of a weakness and it hadn’t fully recovered. I am frustrated and it could mean a few weeks on the sidelines for me.

“I had never had a hamstring injury before. At Yeovil, I rushed back and it was too early but I felt fine before the Notts County game.

“I had trained all week in the build up, but it can be difficult to judge in training.”