The League One side have not pulled out of negotiations just yet.
Oldham Athletic have confirmed that they are continuing talks with convicted rapist Ched Evans over a deal to sign him, despite strong opposition.
BREAKING NEWS: Oldham continuing talks and will conduct due diligence over potential signing of Ched Evans. #SSNHQ
— Sky Sports News HQ (@SkySportsNewsHQ) January 5, 2015
Oldham have revealed in a club statement that they will speak with major stakeholders before making any further decision on whether to sign Evans or not.
“Oldham Athletic is not at this stage making any official announcement with regard to the speculation concerning Ched Evans,” the statement read.
“Whilst acknowledging the considerable media attention, we continue to have conversations with representative bodies such as the PFA and will conduct due diligence with regard to any decision we make on this matter.
“Although it has been reported that a press conference would be held we will officially advise if and when any such event will take place.
“The club would also request that its stakeholders and partners position and privacy be respected until this matter has been concluded.”
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There has been public outcry since the Latics were first linked with Evans and an online petition campaigning for the 26-year-old not to be signed had 22,500 signatures by early Monday morning.
This was then supported by Greater Manchester Police commissioner Tony Lloyd, who also said that the club should not sign the Welshman because of his conviction.
“Ched Evans is a convicted rapist and, whilst I strongly believe in the principle of rehabilitation, it will send out entirely the wrong message if they offer him a contract,” the commissioner was quoted by the Guardian.
“All offenders have the right to rebuild their lives and make amends after they have served their sentence but Ched Evans’ lack of remorse and failure to acknowledge his offence means it is simply inappropriate for him to be on a Greater Manchester football pitch week in and week out presenting himself as some kind of role model, especially to young people.”
Two of Oldham’s sponsors – Mecca Bingo and Verlin Rainwater Solutions – have also said they will pull out of their deals should Evans be signed; a sentiment supported by Labour leader Ed Miliband.
The League One side are no strangers to controversy having signed Lee Hughes back in 2007 after the striker was released from prison for death by dangerous driving.