Monday, 27 August 2012

"Being gay and playing a team sport can be incredibly frightening" - the view of one young footballer

Every once in a while you read something which really sums up something at the forefront of your mind.

The Justin Campaign was set up to highlight the prejudices in football towards the LGBT community and show that, in its current form, the sport cannot truly claim to be the beautiful game.

Some are in denial over the homophobia in the game, others prefer to let abuse pass by. But it really does affect people, both players and fans, who love the sport.

One such example is Stephen Bickford, a United States U-18 player, who was 2004 NSCAA/Adidas National High School Player of the Year  and University of North Carolina striker, all while living the life of a young man in the closet.

Within a personal blog post for US website and campaign group gay4soccer, Stephen writes: "Scoring goals was my job, and it was also my favorite thing to do on this earth. Fortunately for me, the team I had playing behind me made my job a whole lot easier than it could have been, and I have to give them credit for getting me the ball as much as they did.

"One would think that my life couldn’t have been happier: playing for a fantastic team, winning trophies and scoring goals at will. What could I possibly be unhappy about? Well, I knew I was gay.

"Being gay and playing a team sport can be incredibly frightening. You live in constant fear of having your teammates find out your secret, and in constant terror of what the consequences will be."

The entire post, which was posted by US website gay4soccer, is well worth reading. In fact, we INSIST you do. Follow the link here.


  1. I like your blog! Very interesting!

  2. It would be go to read some other stories as well...those that, like me for instance chose not to pretend and hide too much, at all costs.
    I'm playing football, at amateur level....Everyone at the Club I played for 4 years know and there's no probs whatsoever. I recently had trials/played for other two teams, adopted the same approach and no probs! I strictly believe that all this becomes a problem if people are too scared to face the situation. Try and adopt a more natural approach and all of a sudden it will be easier for everyone! Having said that....I'm not coming to the pitch with my rainbow flag I simply don't get obsessed or intimidated and I came across people of all age/background/religion/believes :)
    Maybe we should try and encourage this sort of approach a bit more??

  3. thanks for the info