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Homosexuality in English football

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Homosexuality in English football is sometimes said to be a taboo subject by both players and the media.[1][2] As of 2008, there are no openly gay footballers in England's top four divisions. Some have argued that clubs prevent players from “coming out” as increasingly footballers have a market value which may be damaged. From 2008, homophobic chanting at football grounds has been outlawed. Tottenham Hotspur have a system in place to allow fans to report any anti-gay chanting and Manchester City are the first premership club to have been recognised by pressure group Stonewall as a gay-friendly employer.[3]


  • A Hull City supporter was convicted for homophobic chants made against Brighton fans.[4]
  • Graham Le Saux endured homophobic taunts despite having a baby daughter. The rumours allegedly began because of his “unladdish hobbies” which included antique collecting .[5]
  • Justin Fashanu, the first black £1m footballer, was the first footballer to openly admit that he was gay. He later committed suicide [5]He had described by his manager as a “bloody poof”.[1]
  • The News of the World, claimed that two Premiership footballers were involved in a gay orgy with a figure in the Music industry. Ashley Cole brought legal action because of the untruthful story.[6]

2005 SummitEdit

In 2005 the Football Association held a summit aimed at tackling homophobia in football.[7]

In that same year when the BBC asked all of the 20 Premiership managers their opinions on the issue as part of an investigation all 20 refused. [7]


  1. 1.0 1.1
  2. Boys being boys in the dressing-room helps to keep homosexuality in football's closet | Football - Times Online
  3. Homosexuality & football
  4. BBC NEWS | Magazine | Why are there no openly gay footballers?
  5. 5.0 5.1 BBC News | FA Carling Premiership | Anger over gay taunts
  6. Cole to sue over gay footballer orgy claims | Mail Online
  7. 7.0 7.1 BBC SPORT | Football | Is homophobia in football still a taboo?

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