Open declaration: Steve Bruce offered support to Oldham Athletic over Ched Evans


Convicted rapist Evans saw a move to Boundary Park collapse this week as the League One club bowed to public pressure, with a future in professional football looking increasingly unlikely for the Welsh striker.

Oldham chairman Simon Corney claimed to have received support from three top-flight managers before the move fell through, but opted not to name the trio.

However, Hull City boss Bruce confirmed at a news conference on Friday that he spoke Corney.

“I’ve known Simon for a lot of years now,” he said. “He’d looked at the case too. He was of the opinion to give the kid a chance.

“I can only say on behalf of myself – I know I might be upsetting people – but there is a question of the rape and how he’s been convicted by a jury.

“When you look at the evidence, it is there for appeal.”

And Bruce has backed Evans to make a return to football.

He added: “I’m a big believer that if you have done your time everyone deserves a second chance, we have seen footballers involved with accidents and being given a second chance.

“It’s a very difficult situation for everyone concerned. It’s a pity they could not have the appeal and get it over and done with.

“It has divided opinion of course and when you look at the case in detail and, I don’t think most people have really, because they have just seen Ched Evans as a convicted rapist, when you do look at the case and look at the evidence then certainly Ched has got a case.

“For me the appeal can’t come quick enough for Ched.

“It must be a frustrating and difficult time for him and I think the events of the appeal, for me, will see Ched be allowed to play football again.”

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