Sky Sports reported that former Wales striker Ched Evans has been offered a short-term deal until the end of the season by BOV Premier League leaders Hibernians.
Evans wants to return to football after being released from prison in October, having served two-and-a-half years of a five-year sentence for raping a 19-year-old woman in 2011. The 26-year-old former Sheffield United striker had an offer to train with his former club retracted in November after strong public opposition, while Tranmere, Oldham and Hartlepool also rejected the opportunity to sign him.
Hibernians’ technical director Jeffrey Farrugia told Sky Sports: “I think we are quite close. We are just waiting for the agent to call us and give us the green light that we can sign this player.
“Our vice-president Mr Steve Vaughan has met him in the UK, sat down with him and his agent and spoke about the contract.
“We have no problem with a reaction from our supporters. Our supporters are waiting, minute by minute, for him to come to the club. It is a statement for us to sign a player like this.”
“He was punished and he did his sentence so he should have a second chance, and our club is ready to open wide its doors for him to start his career again in professional football,” Farrugia said.
“I don’t think it sends the wrong message. Everybody in life makes mistakes so you should have a second chance.”
Evans was initially given permission by Sheffield United to return to train with the club at the request of players’ union, the Professional Footballers Association, but following a backlash from Blades supporters, sponsors and patrons – with 160,000 people signing a petition – the club retracted the offer.