Homophobia in Football – The Facts

In UK football there are still no openly gay, male professional footballers and that figure hasn’t changed for over twenty years.

Back in 1990 Justin Fashanu become the first player in England to come out, but took his own life aged 37 in 1998.

Since then former Germany and Aston Villa player Thomas Hitzlsperger revealed his sexuality in January 2014, but only after ending his career in the UK.

The first active player to come out since Fashanu, was former England women’s captain Casey Stoney in February 2014.

However, a recent survey by Stonewall has found that 72% of football fans have heard homophobic abuse at games, proving that homophobia is still a huge issue within the sport.

The survey also found young people more likely to view homophobic ‘banter’ as harmless and that 1 in 5 football fans would be embarrassed if their favourite player came out as gay.

 

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