The Scotland striker accepts there is a perception of him as a “Billy Big Time” among many supporters after a photograph of him posing with a £260,000 Lamborghini supercar he had purchased was posted on Twitter last year while Sunderland were engaged in a relegation battle.
It provoked a wave of scorn and criticism to be heaped upon Fletcher who scored just five goals in 34 appearances for the Wearside club last season.
The 28-year-old, who is poised to lead the line for Scotland against Czech Republic in Prague tomorrow night, is currently on loan at French club Marseille.
Fletcher is adamant the furore which surrounded the Lamborghini photograph provided a false impression of his character but admits it was the kind of damaging error of judgment he is determined to avoid in future.
“There was loads of stuff on social media but it’s life and you learn,” said the former Hibernian, Burnley and Wolverhampton Wanderers forward.
“We all make mistakes. But I don’t regret buying my car. The fans gave me dog’s abuse for that picture, of course they did.
“It would have been worse if I had tweeted the picture of myself beside the car, but I didn’t. I got stick for standing beside my car posing for a picture.
“The guy I bought it through asked me if he could have a picture of me standing next to the car. I said, ‘yeah’. Two weeks later, it fell into someone else’s hands and they tweeted it.
“People thought I was a Billy Big Time. They never bothered with the classic Mini sitting next to it. That’s my pride and joy, that car. But they saw the Lamborghini and they got the wrong idea about me.
“I had a reputation when I was younger for showing off the stuff. But I was brought up in a normal family. I had a poster of a Lamborghini on my wall when I was a kid. I made a good living, I had the chance to buy one and I did.
“But I have grown up now. I have a family to look after now and they come first. I have also learned not to let people take pictures of me with flash cars.
“I am happy to stick to the little Citroen DS4 I got off Marseille now, thanks! It’s a good car to drive. I have a 4x4 for the children and the Citroen I got from the club, which is a tight squeeze for the kids.
“When I used to drive the Lamborghini I could see everyone in my rear view mirror taking pictures on their mobile phones.
“And you’re thinking, ‘you should be concentrating on the road instead of taking pictures of me’. It got to the point I didn’t enjoy driving it.
“I only had it for two months. I ended up parking it on my drive and sticking a cover over it. I left the cover there till I could get rid of it.
“I was basically renting it, so I didn’t lose anything. If I’d made a loss, I’d have gone after the guy who posted the picture on Twitter!”