In a TV interview where he was asked about One Direction, former N’Sync singer Lance Bass says it can be even harder for a gay boy band member to be open about their sexuality compared to a sports star.

The 33-year-old was commenting on The Rubin Report on gay basketball player Jason Collins, who came out on Monday.

Presenter David Rubin said: “If you took one of these One Direction kids – because they basically are kids – my guess then is one of them is gay?”

Lance replied: “Statistically speaking… one of them probably is. But it’s crazy with a market like that because [it’s] 100% young women and they fantasise about these guys and then you have the record labels and everyone [is] grooming you to make sure you don’t even mention you have a girlfriend… so screw the fact that you are going to come out as being gay – it ruins their whole business plan.”

Lance also revealed that some of his female fans still refuse to accept his sexuality as a reason for why he is not interested in women.

“She thought the whole gay thing was a joke and I was just lying about it,” he said of a female fan who spoke to him recently.

In 2010, Lance Bass admitted that he used to join in with teasing gay kids at school to hide his own sexuality.