An inmate from an open prison in Lincolnshire has been signed to play for Boston United Football Club.
Prisoner Rob Wesley, 23, is currently serving a four-and-a-half-year term at North Sea Camp prison for his part in thefts from supermarket cash machines.
The defender will be allowed out for training and games with the Pilgrims as part of a rehabilitation scheme.
Boston United's general manager John Blackwell said the club had worked with the prison for the past 20 years.
"He's done something wrong and I think it's the first thing he's done wrong," said Mr Blackwell.
"He deserves a chance and we're here to give him a chance and here to help him and help the prison.
"Hopefully this will make him a better person. From what he's done so far, you can see how well he's done."
In a statement, the Prison Service said: "The government has developed resettlement regimes in the open prison estate designed to improve the resettlement outcomes of suitable prisoners coming towards the end of long sentences.
"At all key stages of the process the prisoner is subject to rigorous risk assessments to determine suitability for the scheme and the progressive trust placed in them."