Premier League players ‘bullied’ with ‘gay relationship rumours’
Two members of a Premier League squad have alleged that they were bullied by teammates with rumours about their sexualities.
According to the Sun newspaper, two players at an un-named team were bullied after teammates mocked up posters of them.
The paper reports that an insider at the club said that the players were bullied over “malicious rumours”.
The source added that it had affected the squad as a whole and one player even said they were opposed to same-sex relationships on “religious grounds”.
The source went on to say that there had been a “furious backlash”.
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A club insider told the paper: “They are being bullied over malicious rumours.
“This bullying has caused real bad feeling in the squad.
“The vast majority of the lads are totally supportive, but one player has properly kicked off and is making it plain he’s against gay relationships.
“But just when things started calming down, some idiot put these posters up.”
The source went on to say that neither player had ever suggested they might be gay.
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Going on, the source said that other staff such as coaches had been forced to step in.
They said: “Coaching staff have had to step in to calm things down.
“I suspect it was meant to be a joke, but under the circumstances, it really wasn’t appreciated.”
A former Premier League footballer last year revealed that two of his teammates in England were out as gay to the rest of the squad.
Carl Hoefkens, who played for Stoke City and West Bromwich Albion, also said he had a gay teammate while in Belgium.
Manchester United star Paul Pogba has also said he’d welcome a gay player in the Premier League.
And Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe said in March 2017 that he would not hesitate to sign a gay footballer to the club.
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Also last year non-league footballer Liam Davis made history when he became the first out gay male footballer to play at Wembley Stadium, as he represented Cleethorpes Town in the FA Vase final.
But FA boss Greg Clarke has admitted that men’s football is “two decades” behind the women’s game when it comes to its attitude to homosexuality.