According to a new study, penis size does matter to some people, but they may not be the ones you would expect.

University of Brighton senior lecturer Dr Christopher Morriss-Roberts suggests that in the bedroom, penis size doesn’t matter, but that to sportsmen in a locker room the situation is different.

In researching his PHD, Dr Morriss-Roberts interviewed four straight athletes and four gay ones, all who play a variety of sports like tennis, football  and rugby.

His findings suggested that the athletes, gay and straight, were likely to look at other men’s penises in the changing room, comparing different sizes.

It also found that athletes were likely to “idolise” those with larger penises, and those teammates were more likely to be leaders in the team.

Some of the gay respondents said they felt self conscious changing in front of straight men, and one saying he thought it might be “unfair to change in front of heterosexual athletes, in case they felt uncomfortable”.

While straight athletes said they attempted to maintain semi-erections so their penises looked bigger, gay athletes didn’t as they felt they had to act in a “heteronormative manner to de-emphasize queer behaviour”.

Writing for OutSports, Dr Morriss-Roberts said: “This knowing of who has a large c*ck and who didn’t within a homosocial environment helped individual sporting males climb up a social hierarchy of importance,

“Those with the larger penises were revered and idolised by their teammates as a symbol of masculinity.”

The size of teammates appendages also were the basis for jokes outside of the locker room, and were discussed and joked about in social situations.

The reputation of those with larger penises was dififcult to maintain, his findings suggested, and those teammates had to maintain more active sex lives.

According to the Dr Morris-Roberts, those with smaller penises, especially if they were overweight, had to work much harder in order to climb the social hierarchy.

He wrote: “In the thesis I argue that a large penis is now an essential component of hegemonic masculinity, and should be considered a new tenet of masculine capital – taking into account the significance it has on social hierarchy in the sporting environment. I have called this cock-supremacy.”

He concluded: “My work suggests that cock size does matter in sport, irrespective of sexuality, sporting discipline and age.”