The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO RESULTS - By Stu­art Ham­monds

NEW Hartle­pool United man­ager Ron­nie Moore wants to make con­victed rapist Ched Evans his first sign­ing at the Foot­ball League’s bot­tom club.

After draw­ing 1-1 with Ox­ford in his open­ing game in charge yes­ter­day, Moore was asked about spec­u­la­tion link­ing him with a move for the 25-year-old striker, who was re­leased from prison in Oc­to­ber after serv­ing half of a five-year sen­tence for the rape of a 19-year-old woman in a ho­tel room in 2011.

He had been due to restart train­ing with for­mer club Sh­effield United last month, but pub­lic out­cry forced the League One Blades to with­draw their of­fer.

With rel­e­ga­tion to Non­League star­ing them in the face, Hartle­pool could see it as a rep­u­ta­tion risk worth tak­ing.

“If it could hap­pen for me, I would want it to hap­pen,” said Moore. “There is no doubt about that. He is a proven goalscorer.

“He has served his time for me and the boy wants to play foot­ball. If there is a chance that he might come here, I don’t see any rea­son why he shouldn’t.

“I know what will hap­pen now; every­body will be groan­ing and you see what hap­pened at Sh­effield United.’

“You keep push­ing the lad away. He made a mis­take and maybe he hasn’t made the apol­ogy in the right way and there is a case pend­ing on the ap­peal.

“On the foot­ball mat­ters, if he gets on the park he will go a long way to get­ting us out of trou­ble, that’s for sure. “It is a pos­si­bil­ity, I would leave it at that for now.”

Moore him­self is re­turn­ing to the game for the first time since be­ing sacked by Tran­mere April after he ad­mit­ted break­ing Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion bet­ting rules. The 61-year-old wants to start with a clean slate.

“The last thing you want is to be re­mem­bered for some­thing stupid with the FA,” Moore said.“It was a crazy thing to do, and a crazy decision by Tran­mere to let me go. I’m back to prove a point.”

He says he is rel­ish­ing the op­por­tu­nity, adding:“I can take pres­sure all day long – pres­sure is for wimps.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Images

WANTED MAN: Hartle­pool could of­fer Ched Evans a re­turn to the game

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