Ched Evans inclusion based on "merit"

Ched Evans
© PA Photos
The Professional Footballers Association insist that Sheffield United striker Ched Evans was included in the League One team of the year for his "performances on the field."

The Professional Footballers Association have insisted that the decision to include Sheffield United striker Ched Evans in the League One team of the year was based on football reasons alone.

The 23-year-old striker was sentenced to five years in prison on Friday after being convicted of the rape of a 19-year-old girl, and the PFA has explained its reasons for including the Welshman.

"It would have drawn more attention to it had we pulled him out of the team," the PFA's deputy chief executive Bobby Barnes told The Guardian.

"The PFA does not condone in any way, shape or form the offence for which he has been convicted. When the voting took place, nobody had any knowledge of pending convictions.

"The award was based on merit. It was voted for by the players and based on his performances on the field."

Evans has scored 29 league goals for Sheffield United this season.

Ched Evans
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