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Premier League boss: ‘The time is right for gay players’

Michelle O'Toole November 19, 2015

Last night the Chief Executive of the English Premier league told BBC’s Newsnight that the time is right for a gay player to come out.

Richard Scudamore told BBC Newsnight “I am absolutely sure there are [gay players]

“it would be very strange if there wasn’t, wouldn’t it?”

He went on to say that whilst he did not know of any specific gay players, he believed that now would be the right time for a gay player to disclose their sexuality.

“But I actually think the environment would be entirely suitable for them to come out,” he said.

“And I think it would be welcomed, and I think there would be a tolerance to it and I think the time would be right to do that.”

When asked by Newsnight’s Evan Davis if he believed that gay players would be respected if they disclosed their sexuality Mr Scudamore told him “I absolutely think they would, yeah.”

According to a report in the Mirror late last month two top Premier League footballers are ready to come out.

Whilst openly gay players in men’s football are rare, in recent years there have been a number of players who have come out.

Last year former Aston Villa player Thomas Hitzlsperger came out after his retirement.

Also Robbie Rogers came out whilst announcing his retirement, but subsequently decided to come back to the sport in a multi-year contract with LA Galaxy.

In women’s football there are several prominent lesbian players, including former England captain Casey Stoney.

Ms Stoney has previously told the Guardian that her sexuality has never been an issue for her in her 20-year long career and that “There’s a lot the men’s game could learn from the women’s game.”

Recently Viv Anderson, the first black player to represent England in international football, said that gay players shouldn’t be “hiding behind whatever.”

More: evan davis, football, newsnight, premier league, Richard Scudamore

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