More than one in 10 soccer players know a gay footballer, a new survey as revealed.
A poll of professional soccer players in the UK has found 11% know a gay player.
Commissioned by sporting mag FourFourTwo, they asked 100 professional players across the leagues anonymously about issues in football.
A Premier League footballer (the top of the English soccer system) said some guys find it ‘awkward’ to be in a locker room with a gay teammate.
‘I know a gay player at a previous club,’ he said. ‘Everyone knows and most of the lads are comfortable with it. Some are a bit awkward, but that’s their problem’.
A League One player (the second-highest) said: ‘If a player did come out, I think everyone would be supportive, but I’m 100% sure that people in the changing room would be joking, and that some would be ripping it out of him.
‘If there is a gay player in our changing room I would understand why he wouldn’t come out.’
Speaking to Gay Star News, Gay Footballers Supporters Network spokesperson Chris Basiurski said he believed there is an open market for a top level openly gay player.
‘Look at [openly gay rugby player] Gareth Thomas,’ he said. ‘How many times have you seen him on a reality show?
‘If a gay player wanted to come out, there could be a book deal, the reality shows, the interviews. They could make a bucket load.’