Ched Evans is a player who needs no introduction to Sheffield United fans, despite plying his trade in Fleetwood at the moment.
The Welsh striker was the darling of Bramall Lane during the 2011/12 season. He fired in 35 goals across all competitions as United looked on course to win promotion. Ultimately, his well-documented off-field issues ended up costing United promotion and Evans a big chunk of his career.
He returned to football with Chesterfield in the 16/17 campaign. Shortly after, a move back to Bramall Lane materialised as Chris Wilder’s men men finally got back to the Championship.
Things didn’t pan out too well for Evans, however. A number of injuries and good form of others kept him out of the team. Last season, he spent the campaign with Fleetwood Town, firing in 17 goals, before making a permanent move to the seaside club this past summer.
Evans, along with fellow ex-Blade, Paul Coutts, has helped Joey Barton’s men to fifth in the League One table. They are, then, well within a shout of winning promotion this term.
Evans going about his business
Despite the obvious boo boys he hears on a weekly basis, Evans is in fact just getting on with his football.
Last season’s goal tally earned him the permanent move to Highbury Stadium and despite not being a regular starter this year, he’s still managed four goals.
All those four goals have come in winning efforts for the club. Two off the bench, and two from his six starts under Barton’s tenure this year. All in all, it’s a pretty impressive return for Evans.
One last shot at the Championship
Evans splits the Sheffield United fan base. There is no argument about that. Some can’t look past him essentially costing them promotion. Others try to focus on the good that Evans brought to the club.
What can’t be denied is the fact he knows where the back of the net is. Had he not had to serve time in prison, there’s a big case to be made that he would be one of the top strikers in the Championship. Such was his form at the time when the Blades were down in League One.
That’s why he’ll be looking for promotion this season. Fleetwood are only a few points off the top two and what would be a historical promotion to the second tier.
With Paul Coutts pulling the strings, Ched Evans might well fancy this is his year with Fleetwood.
As Sheffield United continue to ride high in the Premier League, it would be nice to see one of their former players get back to his very best and make a name for himself in the Championship.