Steve Evans: Football Manager. Convicted Criminal.

Ian

Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.

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70 Responses

  1. Bath City fan says:

    “Evans landed on his feet. Two days after his resignation, he took up the managerial position at Blue Square Premier club Crawley Town”. The reason for that was that the then ‘owners’ of Crawley, the Majeeds, recognised a fellow crook. Evans even ended up part-owning Crawley for a time, through Prospect Estates and his father-in-law. What beggars belief is why the current owners, who may well be OK, kept on someone like him. It’s bound to taint the whole club.
    Incidentally, a match preview on the unofficial Bath City website, saying most of what is in this article, was complained of by Crawley and taken off. No sign of any litigation so far, as it was all true and in the public domain. I see that touchy creepy Crawley have now apparently complained about a match report on the Altrincham site.

  2. ejh says:

    I just wondered – were any of the players who signed false contracts subject to any penalty

  3. Aldhous says:

    I’m sorry, but what is the point of this?

    This post is about three years out of date isn’t it? Old ground, old news, move on.

    The fact is that fans love to hate Steve Evans, and without him the non-league game would be a much cleaner and much more boring place.

  4. Jertzee says:

    Aldhous – “move on”…..yeah, simple answer isn’t it? Just like brushing it uner the carpet…. Will Genuine Crawley fans be told to “move on” by you when their club goes belly up in the foreseaable future?

    Give me a boring non league without criminals rather than one where he antagonises and moans etc etc.

  5. admin says:

    BCF: I am aware of the situation regarding the Bath preview. For the purpose of clarification, it wasn’t suggested anywhere in the above article that Evans has been involved in anything improper (and comments that suggest otherwise will not be published for obvious reasons).

    EJH: I’m not certain on the legalties of it (employment law is not my chosen specialist subject), but I would imagine that legal liability for an employment contract lies with the employer rather than the employee.

    Aldhous: Interesting perspective. Is your viewpoint an independent one?

  6. Bath Fan says:

    What a brilliantly written article. I had never fully understood the goings on with Boston Utd and steve evans(deliberate lack of capitals) but now I do due to this clear and cinsice peice of writing. Thank you I am now armed with the full facts so when verbally abusing the chubbier version of robbie coltrane on his visit to Twerton Park I will know what I’m talking about.

  7. Luton Fan says:

    I was a referee in the United Counties League when Evans managed Stamford and at least one other club. He was a nightmare. No decisions ever went his team’s way and ‘the referee we had last week’ was always ‘a useless ****’ Referees dreaded taking charge of matches he was involved in. Often (usually when they hadn’t won)he would barge into the referee’s room after the game a dish out a stream if abuse, and for some reason the FA never really did anything about it.

  8. ejh says:

    I would imagine that legal liability for an employment contract lies with the employer rather than the employee.

    I don’t know that’s a question of employment law: isn’t it a question of being an accessory to fraud, or false accounting? The players presumably knew what they were being paid and therefore knew that the contracts they had signed were a false statement of the actual position.

  9. Joseph says:

    This article is very informative. Although one thing that isn’t mentioned is Steve evens paid the price for what he did.

    At what point do we draw a line in the sand and mark out the difference between allowing a judge and jury to decide a mans fate and accept there decision and punishment of the accused or Do we drag up the crimes at every opportunity?

    If F.A have given him a clean break then shouldn’t we?

  10. Innocent fan says:

    I experienced this lout last year at a match against Barrow AFC. The man was engaged in some two way banter with the Bartow fans sat behind him, including myself. All was well until myself anda few others started to get the upper hand (it wasn’t hard). He made a complaint to the fourth official, who summoned the chief Barrow steward and pointed in my direction. Now bear in mind I was sat with a 9 year old child, my banter was funny, but tame. The steward signalled to me to leave my seat and meet him be the exit gate, at which point he informed me that Evans had made an accusation against me. I had apparently called his wife a slut. I asked the steward to consider who may be telling the truth, a man with a child sat in family seats or a convicted criminal? Thankfully the steward took my side and allowed me to retake my seat, much to the dismay of Evans. I said no more until the match was over, then called him a devious bastard, which was true.

  11. bazm says:

    Of course Majeed as prev owner crawley is now a convicted criminal, owing millions in Brighton area. Crawley fans deserve better but they aint gonna get it.

  12. PilgrimMutley says:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/competitions/league-two/3040461/Seedy-truth-that-lies-behind-the-shaming-of-a-football-club.html

    Just in case any of his apologists have forgotten what he did at Boston, here are the FACTS in detail.I’m just waiting for the nastiness to start at Crawley, the various new posters on the website all singing from the Evans hymn sheet, the outing of know dissenters, the threats and following people home, the phone calls, the assaults by his cronies……the list is endless.I hope project promotion ends in the car crash everyone can see coming and he’s banned from football for life like he should have been after Bostongate, a grubby, shameful episode which as tainted our club for ever.

  13. David says:

    Innocent fan – You wouldn’t call his wife a slut while your 9 year old was present, but happily called him a ‘devious bastard’? Interesting standards.

  14. Lew says:

    With Crawley’s finances as they are now – Steve Evans only involvement is with managing the team – all finacial details are now done by Bruce Winfield – one of the owners – he is a Crawley supporters for more than 40 years, like myself, we both stood on the terracing at Town Mead together – Bruce has decided that in the last couple of years to get involved with the club again – he and Susan Carter have managed to turn the club round, so now we have no debt, no overdraft or loans – all monies coming into the club now are investments brought in by Bruce via his friends and business collegues. We as supporters fully back Bruce, knowing that he would not jeopadies the club or his businesses with anything underhand. Yes Steve Evans has had a chequered past, and yes we were all concerned when he first came to the club – but now, he likes winding other teams up, if he can unsettle our opponents then why not Alex Ferguson dose all the time. Steve has brought in a side that can now compete for the promotion spot(and I don’t think we have finished in the Transfer market yet) – either the title or more likely the playoffs – but as Crawley supporters we are going to go along for the ride. We have just come out of a long dark tunnel and as long as Bruce is in charge there is no danger of us going back.

  15. Wycombe Fan says:

    “Slut” would have been defamatory. “Devious bastard” is entirely factual.

  16. PilgrimMutley says:

    It really is unbelievable that there are people who are prepared to ignore his past and take the ‘live for today’ mantra.

    Unless of course its not a wholly independent viewpoint. Boston’s forum was full of ‘people’ with independent viewpoints between 2003-2007.

  17. Lew says:

    Steve was found guilty – served his sentence and has now moved on – his sole resposibility is to put a team on the pitch and with Paul Raynor getting them to play, hopefully getting us to the football league may be this season, may be not. Yes he is wind up merchant, he always will be, thats his nature, but love him or hate him he has a footballing brain and will get the best out of players.

    Don’t you think with our past history of financial difficulties that we would go down the same route – those of you hoping to see us go bust are in for a very big dissapointment – It just will not happen. Bruce is a very wealthy man in his own right and with his friends/business associates make them a formidable force at this level. All our money transactions have been paid up front for all the players signed for fees – just ask the clubs they have paid money too, all the players wages for the next three seasons is in the bank, earning interest (minimal at the moment) as well.
    Our attendances are on the up – maybe not as many as we would like but its a start.

    Whoever you support have a good season and don’t worry yourselves about us – we’re fine

  18. Tommy says:

    Wycombe fan – you know for a fact that Evans’s parents weren’t married at the time of his birth, do you?

  19. Ralph says:

    From reading the comments from the Barrow supporter, I am left with the impression that he didn’t call Evans’ wife a slut. Therefore, if Evans was prepared to lie to a steward to have a Barrow supporter evicted from the ground, then Evans deserves much worse than being called a devious bastard, and I admire the aforementioned supporter to have a wee word in Evans’ ear about the matter.

    I recall the banners made by the BAFC supporters for the game were: “Barrow AFC: Heaven Sent”, Crawley: Evans Bent.”

    Childish, I know, but mildly amusing.

  20. Micky F says:

    So we should all ‘move on’ and forgive Steve for his past indiscretions should we? This might be fair enough if Steve had modified his behaviour or shown some contrition for his past deeds but he’s done neither. The guy is a lowlife and always will be!

  21. Pripyat says:

    A Boston perspective on Evans, in response to him being linked to Grimsby a couple of seasons ago….

    http://www.codalmighty.net/site/ca.php?page=0809/articles/peteb-20081001

  22. bicyclekicks says:

    Crawley signed Richard Brodie from York at three minutes to midnight. I hope they’re paying up front.

    LutonFan – I met a ref from that league last season and he was telling me about how he had Evans by the throat at the end of one match. I bought him a pint.

  23. mick says:

    Lew
    If Bruce is a very wealthy man and die-hard Crawley fan (both of which will be correct), why did he spend last season continually telling the press etc how Crawley’s budget was so low, probably the lowest in the league (yeh right) and it was a miracle they were mid-table etc.

    Surely, as a half decent side last season (on the lowest budget in the league remember)it would have only taken a few more bob to let honest Steve get Crawley in the play-offs. Simple – chance at achieving L2 and no need to spend £500k plus. Play-off TV money, crowd revenues pay’s back Bruce his little gamble.

    If Bruce has attracted major investors, wages waiting in the bank, then what do these people want in return…..I assume their money back plus a bit more….how will that be achieved in L2 or will attendances reach the 5000 mark.

    Why did he just not do what he has done this season and etc

  24. Lew says:

    For the last two seasons since he (and Sue Carter) has been back involved with the club – after the Majeed era, they have consentrated on getting rid of the rather large debt we had. It has taken this time to get the club on a firm structure and all new accounting systems in place, yes Steve did have a fairly low budget to work with for last season – it wasn’t until a couple of months ago that Bruce brought in these new investers into the club – he couldn’t get them to come all the time we had this debt hanging over us. This money now coming in is “want for a better word” Donations – they are not expecting any return on the investment – these people who are friends and associates of Bruce, he has basically brought them on board. Should the club succeed with this venture, then there is more investment to come. I believe they are also looking at investing into the fabric of the club – increasing the capacity when it is required – The attendances are growing week by week – hopefully with a successful few months ahead of us we will seem them grow even more. We are as shocked as any about this money – but we all know Bruce and trust his judgement, he is not going to let himself and his associates tar their reputations. Should it fail in three years then we will have no debt to pay back, player will be out of contract and we will then obviously have to cut our budgets accordingly. Also Bruce has stated that the fees paid out to bring in these players are no where near the figures that are being quoted – especially for Brodie and Wright. Any other club would jump at the chance of investment like this.

  25. Dave says:

    Steve Evans isn’t a wind-up merchant, he is a criminal and a cheat. The fact that the FA have let him “move on” is to their eternal shame and not any indication of the morals the rest of us should adopt. The FA showed their lack of fibre at the time by allowing Boston’s promotion when they should have been made to stay in the Conference. I’m not saying Dagenham should have gone up, but Boston shouldn’t have either.

    I simply do not believe that all the money being put into Crawley is a donation. Wealthy businessmen are not renowned for taking on lower-league clubs out of the goodness of their heart. All the people who have tried to do this sort of thing have been shown up as charlatans, and almost all have eventually left their clubs in the lurch. Look at Grays, Hornchurch, even Rushden to an extent when Griggs pulled the plug. Whilst all the noises coming from Winfield sound great, plenty of clubs in the past have had similar stories. There isn’t any reason whatsoever why Winfield’s business friends would invest just in return for his gratitude.

    I don’t think anybody is looking forward to gloating when it goes wrong, but people are very much fed up with clubs spending unsustainable amounts.

    Crawley are apparently already flexing their muscles against anybody who writes something they don’t like, getting a Bath City unofficial website match preview removed.

  26. mick says:

    Lew
    Wow, I wish I had some friends like the ones that Bruce has…….maybe my friends will then buy my next car for me and help pay off the debts of my business.

    I would be more than happy to accept the donations from my new best mates and might even refer to them as investors if that made them feel nice.

    PS
    Are you really Steve Evans ?

  27. Lew says:

    Mick, If I was 20 years younger, two stone heavier, with a broad scottish accent then you could say that – but as luck would have it I’m not. Thanks for the compliment though!!!!!! :-)

  28. mick says:

    Cheers Lew.
    Enjoy the season.

  29. Scotty says:

    “The players presumably knew what they were being paid and therefore knew that the contracts they had signed were a false statement of the actual position”
    As far as I understand, the players signed blank contracts, “to be filled in later”…

  30. Martin says:

    What is really underwhelming is just how many other Steve Evanses there are out there in football…

  31. Stuart says:

    Wow Lew, I hope you are right, but really have my doubts. No true football fan deserves to see their club suffer. As a King’s Lynn fan I spent many years watching what I thought was a well run football club. I thought this because this is what I was told by our board, only to find out we were, in the words of HMRC, “woefully insolvent”.

    Spending hugely over three years and then saying oh well we’ll cut the budget if we haven’t acheived our aims after that sounds simple, but isn’t. Expectations at the club will still be high, and huge amounts of pressure will be on the board to still deliver.

    I find it very hard to believe these people are donating money to the club without anything in return. Throwing money at football clubs at this level has proved a recipe for disaster time and again.

    I can’t even wish you best of luck for the season, as the thought of Evans having any sort of success turns my stomach. I will just say I hope you still have a club to support when this little promotion project is all over.

  32. Lord Cutler Beckett says:

    Football management at a lower level is all about taking the players you have and making a team unit of players from your level that can win matches.

    Buying all the best players and booting them in a group of 11 playing below their natural level at over inflated wages smacks of someone that ultimately doesn’t know what he is doing.

    Evans is a conman, he conned the tax man and is continuing to con the public of Crawley that he is fit to manage anything other than finishing his lunch.

    We at Boston were not financially crippled on being relegated from the football league. We were financially mis-managed by a man that when asked to play by the rules to a budget. Failed and Failed to our cost AGAIN.

  33. Martin says:

    “all monies coming into the club now are investments brought in by Bruce via his friends and business collegues”

    Can you provide any details of these “investments”? Is it loans or equity? Where does the money actually come from?

    Why do Bruce and Susan think that this business plan will work at Crawley when it has not worked at any other similar-sized football club it has been tried at?

    Steve Evans makes Alex Ferguson look like Gandhi TBH.

  34. Martin says:

    “it wasn’t until a couple of months ago that Bruce brought in these new investers into the club”

    Who are these new investors Lew?

    Do they pass the FA’s Fit and Proper Person’s Test?

    What is their motivation?

    Everyone knows that in a properly-run and funded sport Steve Evans (and the many like him) would have just been banned for life after his fraud at Boston.

  35. Bristol Pilgrim says:

    Steve Evans was a cheat and went a long way to destroying the reputation of Boston fans, but lets not also forget the likes of Rodwell, Sotnick and Malikinson who destroyed the club financially and allowed him to make the decisions he did.
    As a Boston fan it is easy to believe that all that Glitters is gold, but its not!! people do not give money in £100,000 lump sums without securing it as an investment or loan. And getting a gate of just over 1000 fans will not cover what is owed. Fans always leave it until to let to find out whats really happening, I would advise Crawley fans to do the same before its too late. If its all legit good luck to Crawley fans, i cannot say the same to the “Fat cheat” as he played a major part in nearly destroying the club I love!

  36. Martin says:

    You also make it sound like Bruce losing his awesome reputation is something that simply could never happen, which is odd.

    This exact same thing has happened many times before at many other clubs you know.

    They all had loyal one-club wealthy men who staked their reputations on it too…

  37. Alan J says:

    It’s a pity the FA don’t have a Fit and Proper Person test for managers!!

    As a Swindon fan, who suffered demotion in 1990 for ‘illegal payments’, compared to us, Boston got off very lightly. They got deducted 4 points for avoiding paying tax and NI totalling £245k, which meant they paid in the region of £750k to the players on double contracts. The amount of money involved at Swindon…£100k !!

    The current Crawley owner might be a wealthy businessman, but it’ll be interesting to see if the money he has put in, is a gift or a loan. If it’s a loan, well he’ll want that money back sooner or later.

    We at Swindon have probably got some of the wealthiest owners in the FL, but we don’t want them to throw stupid money chasing a dream, as we nearly went out of business nearly 3 years ago, and we don’t want to go down that route ever again.

  38. Boston sponsor says:

    People should never forget even if they can forgive. However, Evans does not deserve to be forgiven. He never gave a meaningful apology to the Boston Utd supporters, sponsors or the town itself for the way he behaved. Such is his arrogance I don’t think he actual considers himself to be at fault for what he did.
    He abuses and bullies people – be they administrators, officials, players or supporters. He should not be in the game – simple as that. It is all about him and his ego – he does not care about football or the fans.

  39. evans89 says:

    i think to be honest you all have got to take a look in the mirror, to many are quick to criticise but i garuntee if Steve was doing the work he is doing at any of your clube(albeit legit now) none of you would be moaning. He has a proven track record when it comes to the game itself and it just boils down to jealousy and the fact that you know someone in that position now with a bigger budget, better players they will romp the conference this year.

  40. Ted Forster says:

    Very interesting piece,if a “rehash” of an old story.
    I do feel however that you were in some way trying to drag my club Darlington into this. That someone who was not involved in the fraud but new Evans later joined Darlo should not in my opinion give reason to bring us into this.
    Believe me we have enough old bones of our own rattling round.

  41. Lew says:

    So far so good for us at Crawley, everything seems to be coming together – additional funds have been made available to Steve in January – not the £m everyone has been bemoaning, but a substantle amount for the BSP. Whether he chooses to spend it strenghtening the squad is upto him, personally I think we have a group of players that can win the league now, especially getting Dannie Bulman in midfield again – the team is starting to gel, great game at Luton, but in fairness to Luton, a draw would have been a fairer result, but we won so I will take that. Need to build on that at Barrow this weekend.

  42. pilgrim paul says:

    BUT WE ARE BOUNCING BACK,YES WE GOT RELEGATED 2 DIVISIONS BECAUSE OF THE MANAGMENT,BUT WE ARE IN THE CONFERENCE PLAY OFF PLACES AND HOPEFULLY WILL GO UP AGAIN,TODAY LINCOLN CITY WERE DE MOTED TO CONFERENCE LOOKS LIKE IF WE GO UP THEY MEET US AGAIN,DONT WORRY BOSTON WILL BE OK WITH THE CURRENT CHAIRMAN WE WILL BE OK,OUR LADS ARE FIT AS FUK AND ARE IN GOOD SHAPE,THEY PLAY FOOTBALL VERY WELL AND ARE ON THE UP,YEAH EVANS WAS HERE BUT THANK GOD HE HAS GONE,LET CRAWLEY DEAL WITH THE FAT LOUD MOUTHED SCOTCH TWAT! TTFN,UP THE PILGRIMS,WATCH OUT FOR THIS NAME,SHAUN PEARSON OK

  43. keith says:

    all the pathetic prats who ran down steve evans & crawley town must be sick to see us on the way to league one

  44. Ian says:

    Not really, Keith. Crawley still have a wage budget that dwarfs other clubs in the division, and I should think that most of us still believe that he should have been banned for life after what he got up to at Boston. As long as Evans remains there, they will have very few well-wishers from outside Crawley ltself.

  45. Gillingham supporter says:

    He bitter and twisted and sore loser.Gillingham were the better team

  46. up the gills says:

    Wow, since Gillinghams’ boxing day match at Crawley (he certainly knows how to upset people with his comments) and having read in depth many reports of Mr Evans adventures in football, it amazes me that he is still allowed to be involved in football in any capacity, It’s like giving Adolf Hitler a job with UNICEF. I will be saying a special prayer for Crawley supporters tonight!!!

  47. Wookie says:

    Rotherham, you have my sympathies.

  48. DT says:

    I am a lifelong Boston fan and for the first 95% of his spells at BUFC I was a devoted fan of SE. Most football fans will cling to anyone or anything that delivers apparent succes for their club. What SE did was ruined the good name of our club on the back of his own disregard f

  49. DT says:

    I was a loyal Evans fan for 95% of his time at my club, Boston United FC. I pity Rotheram United FC. Beware of white man who speak with fork tongue

  50. DT says:

    evans scum

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