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Ched Evans and Alex Neil address Preston fans after signing backlash

Ched Evans and Alex Neil address Preston fans after there was a huge amount of backlash when the signing of the former Blade was announced.

The striker says he can’t let himself dwell on his past, however respects every supporter’s opinion on the Championship club bringing him in at Deepdale in January.

A deal for the 32-year-old was sealed last month, at first it was on loan from Fleetwood Town after getting the boot from Joey Barton, before the deal was made permanent until the end of the season.

This subsequently caused a strong anger from the Lilywhites fanbase, and since then has made his first start for the club, where he impressed and scored against Rotherham.

Fans decided to arrange a fight with each other just hours after the deal was confirmed.

He spoke with the local media for the first time since coming in, addressing his five-years out of the game and said he can only look forward himself.

“I appreciate everybody’s opinion, everybody is entitled to their opinion,” he said.

“And some people will agree with it and some won’t, but if I dwell too much on that – or I went into every day worrying about what people thought or said – I couldn’t be a professional footballer.

“I just try to enjoy every day and not take any day for granted.

“But with regards to football, and me as a Preston North End player, they will quickly get to know that I play with my heart on my sleeve and that I play every game like it’s my last.

“For me that’s just how I play every game, I don’t shy away from stuff and that’s just how it should be every game, that your work, endeavor and commitment comes first and foremost.

“It’s not surreal, because I always felt like I could play at this level and it’s not really for me like I’ve got a point to prove, but just going out and enjoying my football again and showing people what I can do on the pitch.

“You don’t want to sound big headed but I’ve played in the Championship before so I always felt I was capable of playing in it, I’ll match any defender for physicality.

“I think I showed Saturday that I am capable but you can’t judge me off one game, I need to be consistent with my performances and I’m confident in my ability that I will.”

Manager Alex Neil also spoke on the anger from the supporters, saying: “I said this at the time with Ched Evans, I think people reacted to what their knowledge of the situation is,” he said. “The simple fact is he got found not guilty and got released, so as I said before who am I or anyone else to judge really?

“He is a football player, we are a football team and he’s a good player.

“He came in last game, gave his all and a good performance for the team and that’s how I think it should be judged.

“It really is that straightforward for me, I don’t try and complicate it for myself any further.”

Joey Barton has also revealed more about his exit from Fleetwood, you can see what he had to say by clicking HERE.

Social media users reacted as Ched Evans and Alex Neil address Preston fans after the signing backlash…

@Brandon31478850: Come on Ched keep your head up lad! You played a great game on Saturday. If you score against rovers mate, the haters will be wanting to kiss your feet

@MichaelHunter__: Ched hat trick against Blackburn Incoming

@mattytaylor37: Some fucking boy I tell ya

@mjm201187: Proven not guilty and gives his all when playing for us, will do for me

@JamiePilley: You won’t get more of a work horse player up front, he’ll prove his doubters wrong as he’s done many times before

@ChrisRiley25: Grafted his bollocks off Saturday mate and got a deserved goal for it

@Will06077296: alex neil is exactly right. He got proven in court not guilty, but that doesn’t matter. he is here to play football, not to win any personality of the year awards. start him against blackburn, he was good against rotherham

@D34N04: Just let the lad crack on and play football guilty or not he served his time. If he’s putting it in on the pitch then everyone should be backing him to do well for the club.

@lancs_rob: Good luck ched. Hope you do well and get a new deal at the end of the season. You give us a option i think we have lacked since hugill left. Strong,intelligent but can get around the pitch at the same time

@AJPNEFC: End of the day he got found not guilty. All these Twitter lawyer wannabes can have their irrelevant opinions, let the professionals deal with the court case which they did, and Ched to deal with the football which he is doing.

@Hayter16inch: Please let this be the last word on the matter. It’s all about footy.

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