PFA chief Gordon Taylor relates Ched Evans case to Hillsborough

Redknapp: Evans deserves 'second chance' (1:33)

QPR manager Harry Redknapp has commented on Ched Evans' attempts to find a new club after the former Sheffield United striker was released from prison. (1:33)

Professional Footballers' Association chief executive Gordon Taylor sparked controversy after comments he made that linked Ched Evans' attempt to clear his name to the Hillsborough disaster.

Taylor made the comments in a BBC radio interview after it emerged that Evans' proposed move to Oldham had collapsed amid threats to club staff and their families. He later apologised and clarified that he was not trying to "compare the cases."

Evans, now 26, was jailed in April 2012 after being convicted of raping a 19-year-old woman. He maintains the sex in a Rhyl hotel was consensual and protests his innocence. He was released from prison on licence in October, after serving half of a five-year sentence.

An appeal against the conviction was rejected by three judges at the Court of Appeal in 2012 and the case is currently being considered by the Criminal Cases Review Commission.

Taylor mentioned Evans' situation alongside events that followed the Hillsborough tragedy, which resulted in the deaths of 96 Liverpool supporters at the 1989 FA Cup semifinal against Nottingham Forest in Sheffield.

After years of campaigning by the families of those who died, new inquests into the deaths began last year and are continuing in Warrington.

Taylor told BBC Radio 5 Live: "He would not be the first person or persons to have been found guilty and maintained their innocence and then been proved right.

"If we are talking about things in football, we know what happened, what was alleged to have happened at Hillsborough. And it's now unravelling and we are finding it was very different to how it was portrayed at the time -- indeed by the police at the time.

"He's in a very difficult situation because he's been put through a wringer and the minute you show any sympathy for Ched everybody will say 'Well, what about the other parties concerned?'

"And that's why I'm making the point that nobody's forgetting them."

Taylor added: "Obviously it's not a good time for him - he needs support like everybody in this particular incident needs support, not least the woman concerned."

On Friday morning, Taylor's comments were criticised as "crass, insensitive and inappropriate" by Phil Scraton, an adviser to the bereaved families who was speaking to the BBC.

Taylor clarified his comments in an interview with talkSport and said he has no plans to resign and is no stranger to controversy.

"It is not the first time I have been asked that. As a trade union leader, you have got to be up there and say what you think," he said.

"The choice of me as chief executive of the PFA is down to my members, it is not down to me."

He stood by his comments about media portrayal of events and public perception.

"I wasn't comparing the cases I was comparing the public, the reaction of police the reaction of media the reaction of MPs at the time similar to this now with Ched Evans," he said. "If that comparison was wrong again, we're a world of free speech I respect that point of view.

"Obviously the cases are different .It was the point about public perception and how the truth can unravel over a period of time."