An unnamed Premier League footballer has revealed he is gay in an open letter, but isn't prepared to come out publicly. The star has opened up about the torment of keeping his sexuality a secret and has aimed the letter at authorities and fans, describing how he is taking a "huge step" in revealing his sexuality. Even writing that down in this letter is a big step for me. I don't feel ready to share it with my team or manager. The player also talks about how his sport isn't yet "ready for a player to come out" and how "the game would need to make radical changes" in order for him to feel able to reveal his identity.
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Ashley Cole wins apology for sex slur | News of the World | The Guardian
Homosexuality in English football has been described as a taboo subject by both players and the media. Some, such as Peter Clayton, who chairs the FA's "Homophobia in Football" working group, have argued that clubs prevent players from " coming out " as footballers have an increasing commercial market value which may be damaged. Homosexuality in England and Wales but not Scotland or Northern Ireland was decriminalised in , leading to more liberal public attitudes. While many openly gay politicians and entertainers have remained elected and popular with little comment on their sexuality, football has not experienced the same degree of openness.
Every football team probably has one gay player - Deeney
The England footballer Ashley Cole and a radio DJ have received an apology and damages from the News of the World over articles published this year wrongly linking them to a "gay sex romp". The newspaper ran articles on February 12 and 19 that alleged that unnamed Premiership footballers and a DJ had used a mobile phone as a "gay sex toy". The latter piece was accompanied by a partially obscured photograph, and Cole's lawyer said he had been wrongly identified by insinuation and innuendo. Ian Thompson, or "Masterstepz", a DJ with Choice FM, also claimed the article would have led readers to believe that he had been involved. An apology printed on page three of yesterday's News of the World says: "Although the photograph was pixillated some readers have understood Mr Cole to be one of the footballers and Masterstepz to be the DJ concerned.
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