Sheffield United sponsors threaten to quit if Evans re-signed

Sheffield United's two main kit sponsors have threatened to walk out on the club if Ched Evans is re-signed at Bramall Lane.

The League One club confirmed on Wednesday that Evans would resume training with the club after serving two-and-a-half years in prison for rape.

Evans was contracted by Sheffield United at the time of his conviction, though the club allowed his deal to expire two months later when he was imprisoned.

A club statement revealed the Professional Footballers' Association had requested they welcome Evans back to training in an attempt to "get back to a level of fitness, which might enable him to find employment in his chosen trade".

Three club patrons have resigned from their roles over Evans' return to the club.

And United's primary sponsor John Holland Sales - a used-car dealership - said in a statement: "John Holland Sales is a long established family business and condemns rape and violence of any kind against women in the strongest possible terms.

"Whilst ever the 'ex-player' is not employed by Sheffield United Football Club, John Holland Sales Ltd remains committed to its commercial partnership.

"Should this situation change John Holland Sales will re-evaluate its position as shirt sponsor."

DBL Logistics, whose logo appears on the back of United's shirts, made their intentions even clearer.

The company posted on its official website: "DBL Logistics would end its back-of-shirt sponsorship with Sheffield United if the club employed a convicted rapist.

"However, whilst the current situation remains and Ched Evans is not contracted to Sheffield United, DBL Logistics will continue its business to business relationship with the club."

Evans has long professed his innocence, and has submitted an appeal to the Criminal Cases Review Commission in an attempt to clear his name.