Sheffield United: Joey Barton says Ched Evans was his number one target

Ched Evans has joined his former Sheffield United team mate Paul Coutts at Fleetwood Town, after completing a permanent move to the League One club.

Tuesday, 6th August 2019, 17:55 pm
Updated Tuesday, 6th August 2019, 22:46 pm
Ched Evans has returned to Fleetwood Towb: James Chance/Getty Images

The centre-forward signed a two year contract with Joey Barton's side earlier today, returning to the North-West following a successful spell on loan at Highbury last term.

Evans becomes the second former United player Town have signed during the close season, with Coutts also being unveiled by Barton's employers after being released by Chris Wilder ahead of the new Premier League season.

"Ched has been our number one target all summer and to get the deal done is huge credit to everybody at the football club," Barton said. "Everyone saw the impact he had on and off the pitch last season, and I speak on behalf of the players and staff who are delighted to see him back at Fleetwood Town."

Evans, aged 30, rejoined United in 2017 but a niggling injury hampered his efforts to earn a place in Wilder's starting eleven. He scored 42 league goals in only 72 starts during his first spell in South Yorkshire.

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"To sign a player of Ched’s ability permanently is a real sign of what we’re building here, and we can’t wait to get him on to the pitch and scoring goals," Barton, who can extend Evans' deal by a further 12 months, added.