The recent Football news has been dominated by the Ched Evans saga, with Oldham Athletic seemingly on the verge of signing the convicted rapists but pulled out at the last minute due to public protest and major sponsors threatening to leave if the club sign him. Oldham fans don’t want him playing for their beloved team, but why not?
Former Welsh international Evans served half of his five-year sentence after being convicted of rape back in 2011. Sheffield United fans did not want him back at their club, and so started the drama of where he is going to play and get his career back on track. But it seems, unfortunately for him, his past as made him an unwanted man. This is something that many people feel strongly about – whether he should be allowed to play again or not. But for the people who think he shouldn’t, there are current footballers that have committed serious crimes and yet still have managed to get back into playing professional football.
One of the most well known cases would be of former Newcastle man Nile Ranger who was also convicted of rape. However, despite being something of a loose cannon, he managed to get back into professional football when Swindon signed the forward with the Englishman now at Blackpool.
Another case would be of the former West Brom striker Lee Hughes. Back in 2003 he was accused and sentenced for causing death by dangerous driving after losing control of his vehicle. After serving half of his 6-year sentence, he was coincidentally signed by Oldham Athletic.
These two cases are just as serious as Ched Evan’s case and yet clubs aren’t signing him because of the damage it could do for their clubs. Maybe it is because this case has been much more publicised than the other two with famous blades fan Jessica Ennis-Hill notably requesting her name be taken off one of the stands if he signs for them. It seems quite ridiculous that Evans is not allowed to redeem himself, clear his name and get back to playing the game he clearly very much loves.
It could be said that fans, clubs and sponsors around the country that have found themselves associated with him should understand that he has served his time and it seems quite unfair that he being halted in continuing on with his career. The two other footballers that have been mentioned above have done just as worse and have been allowed to continue with their careers. Why not Evans?