British prime minister David Cameron has proffered a fatherly warning to clubs that might want to signed convicted rapist Ched Evans.
The 26-year-old Manchester City youth graduate, Welsh international and prolific Sheffield United scorer has not been able to find work since getting out of prison, where he served time for rape.
[ MORE: Tuesday’s transfer rumor roundup ]
The backlash has been severe for several teams interested in his services, as Sheffield United took heat for allowing him to train with them and Oldham Athletic is the latest English club to hear from sponsors and fans about their interest in the striker who scored 35 goals in 42 appearances during his last season. Malta club Hibernians wanted to sign Evans but the English government would not allow him to work abroad due to his status as a sex offender.
A spokesman for Cameron, speaking under the customary condition of anonymity, says Tuesday “the Prime Minister does think that footballers are role models and he is sure that any potential would-be clubs and employers will weigh their decisions very carefully.”
One of the major problems is that Evans continues to assert his innocence, and has a legal appeal in court.
There’s been a hard line drawn in England on the Evans case, and those who’ve dared to toe it have felt sharp repercussions. The prime minister’s words are not a good sign for the striker.