Under-fire Hird gets backing of veteran Fletcher

ESSENDON veteran Dustin Fletcher has backed embattled coach James Hird to lead the club out of its slump.

The question is, can Hird (pictured) afford to support the 400-gamer with the team needing to start rebuilding in the wake of a 4-9 start to the season and last Sunday's embarrasing 110-point loss to St Kilda?

"He's all right, got all the players behind him - he'll be fine," Fletcher said as he arrived at Olympic Park for scans on his injured groin.

Hird and Fletcher were two members of a big group of teenagers - dubbed the 'Baby Bombers' - brought into the Essendon line-up in 1992 after coach Kevin Sheedy decided on a rebuild.

Whether Hird, contracted until the end of 2016, gets that chance is something Essendon CEO Xavier Campbell wasn't prepared to answer yesterday.

"It's disappointing obviously. That performance isn't good enough and our supporters deserve better," Campbell said.

"That's all I've got to say."



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