FA chairman suggests gay footballers come out together

first_imgFootball Association chairman Greg Clarke has suggested the idea of a group of gay footballers coming out together.Clarke says he has spoken to gay players about the possibility of showing unity when deciding it is the right time to go public with their sexual orientation.Last year Clarke said he “wouldn’t recommend” a footballer coming out at the moment due to the risk of being abused, but hopes if a number of players come out at the same time it would allow them to share the spotlight.Clarke was speaking to The Times. PA“I put the message out there that if a number of top-level pros want to come out, why don’t we synchronise it? So one person doesn’t have to come out on their own,” he said in an interview with The Times. “The Premier League, the Football League and the FA could do it at the start of the season. At the start of the season everybody thinks it is their season, the crowds are happy, the sun is shining. I was asked (recently) if football is ready for top-level pros to come out and I said I’m not sure we were.The FA promote a number of anti-homophobia campaigns. PA“There was a survey which said people would support gay people in their own team, yes, but I’m worried about what they said about gay people in the other team, not that they would do bad things, but I said we should prepare well.“I’ve been asking the gay community, ‘How can we provide more support and orchestrate it so that people get the right level of support if people want to be open about their sexuality?’. I’ve met 15 gay sports people in the last four weeks to ask their views, including footballers.“It is very difficult to get to a representative set of gay top-level footballers because some of them are happy with their sexuality and just don’t want anyone to know. I don’t want to be part of a process that says, ‘You’ve got to come out’. That’s not right. People are cautious. It’s a one-way street. Once you’re out of the closet, you’re out.”last_img read more