Football League clubs ‘will not go near Adam Johnson’ as former England international is released from prison
- English football will turn its back on Adam Johnson now he is out of prison
- Johnson released from HMP Moorland on Friday after serving half his sentence
- Sportsmail has contacted all League One and Two clubs in a commutable distance from the former Sunderland man’s home in County Durham
Adam Johnson will find that English football has turned its back on him after his release from prison on Friday and that the chances of playing abroad are equally remote.
The former England international was released from HMP Moorland in the early hours of Friday morning after serving half of his six-year sentence for sexual grooming and sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl.
Sportsmail has contacted all League One and League Two clubs within a daily commute of Johnson’s home in County Durham and not one of them has said they would consider speaking to him.
Adam Johnson will find English football has turned its back on him now he is out of prison
One chief executive said he could not envisage any Football League club offering the 31-year-old a way back into the game given the nature of his conviction and the backlash it would cause.
We have also discovered that Johnson will be denied the chance of a payday in China because of strict visa requirements to work in the country.
The ex-Manchester City and Sunderland winger said during a leaked video from his time in prison that he had more hope of reviving his playing career abroad, and the likes of the Chinese Super League have been mooted.
Pictured for Sunderland in 2015, he will see chances abroad limited due to a criminal record
However, we understand that players moving to China have been subject to thorough criminal records checks and have had to declare any convictions.
The same is true of America, Australia and some Middle East countries such as Saudi Arabia, meaning Johnson’s opportunities are limited.
Hebei China Fortune, the club managed by Chris Coleman, told us they would not consider signing Johnson because of his criminal record.
His situation is also complicated by him being released on license, meaning he is likely to have regular contact with the probation service and so limiting the chances of him playing overseas.