U.S. Soccer Star Says He's Gay, Then Retires

U.S. Soccer Star Says He's Gay, Then Retires

 

In the space of a heartfelt 405-word blog last night, Robbie Rogers, a United States winger, became the only openly gay player in English professional football and promptly announced his plan to “step away” from the sport at the age of 25.

Rogers, who was released from his contract with Leeds United last month after a spell on loan to Stevenage, announced that football had been “my escape, my purpose, my identity”, but that it had hidden his “secret” and that “now is my time step away”, saying that “it’s time to discover myself away from football”.

In contrast to other sports, there had been no openly gay player in English professional football since the late Justin Fashanu came out in 1990. Clarke Carlisle, the Professional Footballers’ Association chairman, said in September that his union had engaged in discussions with eight gay players, but that “seven of the eight didn’t want to come out because they were worried about the media”.

 

 

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