Ched Evans and the PFA Awards - an own goal?

The end of season PFA Awards usually play host to a few baffling announcements. Last night was no different however it wasn’t the presence of a thoroughly mediocre player in the Team of the Year that had fans scratching their heads, it was something much more sobering.

Sheffield United striker Ched Evans, who was sentenced to five years in prison for rape on Friday, was named in the League One Team of the Year. While his performances on the pitch certainly justify the selection questions are rightly being asked as to whether the PFA should’ve honoured him so soon after his conviction.

The PFA decided that as the vote was made before anyone was aware of his guilt that his nomination should stand but many fans don’t feel the same way. His selection, coupled with a vicious attack on the victim from Evans’ team mate Connor Brown, has provoked dismay. As the Twitter reaction showed there’s a belief that the footballing fraternity doesn’t take allegations of this nature seriously enough.

In hindsight the PFA may wish they’d quietly removed him from the final squad. At the very least it would’ve saved them from the unconvincing explanation they had to air this morning and may just have stopped them from damaging the public image of the game even further.