League One: Oldham Athletic latest club facing opposition to signing former Sheffield United striker Ched Evans
Oldham Athletic are facing increasing opposition to potentially signing former Sheffield United striker Ched Evans.
The League One side have been strongly linked with a deal for the the convicted rapist, 26, who it is believed was due to sign for the club this week.
Evans was released from prison last October after serving half of his sentence after being found guilty of rape, and his return to football has caused controversy, with many opposed to him playing professional football again in any capacity.
More than 20,000 people have signed an online petition urging Oldham not to sign the Wales international striker, with a similar petition gaining over 100,000 signatures when he was linked with a return to former club Sheffield United.
The Blades initially wanted to allow Evans to train at the club to regain his fitness following his release, and were considering a deal for the striker, but patrons of the club and fans alike were strongly against it.
Olympic Champion Jessica Ennis Hill, who has a stand named after her at Bramall Lane, said she would have her name removed if he was allowed to play for the club again.
Evans is currently appealing his conviction, and has maintained his innocence since his release, leading to critics accusing the Welshman as showing a lack of remorse for his crime.
The Criminal Cases Review Commission has already confirmed it is conducting an investigation into the conviction of Evans. That investigation could take 35 weeks.
The Professional Footballer's Association (PFA) has stood by Evans since his release and have been hopeful that a club will allow Evans to continue his career.