Australian ex-footballer and TV host Sam Newman has been criticised after posting a video in which he appears to mock the transgender community.

The 73-year-old former athlete posted the video to his Twitter account on Monday (March 4), which also featured Australian Football League journalist Mike Sheahan and former St. Kilda coach Grant Thomas.



As reported by Yahoo, Newman appeared to make jokes about transitioning in response to recent controversies about trans women in sport. (The video has since been removed from Newman’s Twitter.)

Newman said: “I think I’ve run my race as an older male, and I’m thinking of transitioning.

“If you wish to transition into a man or woman that is fine, but please don’t be arrogant enough to think you can just climb into women’s sport.”

— Sam Newman

“I think I could feel comforted by being an older female, and it’ll work well because my partner is thinking of turning herself into a boy… It doesn’t change we’re still man and woman.”

Sheahan, who also appeared in the controversial clip, asked if Newman planned to go to the Olympics. Newman replied: “I’m going to clean up on world titles as a woman… an older woman.”

Newman appeared to echo comments made by former tennis player Martina Navratilova and former Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies that trans women had an unfair advantage over cisgender women in competitive sport.

Backlash over Sam Newman video mocking trans women

Newman’s video has been widely criticised on social media.

Transgender football player Hannah Mouncey condemned Newman’s behaviour in a post shared on Twitter, calling Newman an “embarrassment and a fool.”

Mouncey said: “For someone who says he learned something after how he spoke about Caitlyn Jenner on TV, there are no words. Just accept it and don’t try and talk your way out of it this time.”


Former footballer Russell Greene’s daughter, Angie Greene, also spoke out against Newman’s actions on Twitter.

She said: “This is disgusting Sam. We met up last year about your comments towards The Trans Community and how dehumanising and disgusting they were.

“We met up last year about your comments towards The Trans Community and how dehumanising and disgusting they were.”

— Angie Greene

“You seemed somewhat remorseful yet sadly this is not surprising at all. Not great seeing the other two laugh along either.”

Sam Newman lifts trophy at the Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, Australia
Sam Newman lifts trophy at the Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, Australia. (Quinn Rooney/Getty)

During an appearance on 3AW Radio on Tuesday (March 5), Newman addressed the controversy.

He said: “I’m pointing out the ludicrous proposition where transgender athletes can choose their gender to compete on some sort of contrived footing with other binary biological sportspeople.

“It is absolutely ridiculous and will bedevil world sport unless the authorities come down on some very strict guidelines.”

Newman then added: “If you wish to transition into a man or woman that is fine, but please don’t be arrogant enough to think you can just climb into women’s sport if you’re a man and compete on an equal footing.”




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