Gay ex-footballer Thomas Beattie says he ‘would not urge’ any player to come out
Ex-footballer Thomas Beattie says he would not urge any player to come out as gay, having only just done so himself.
The 33 year-old, who spent his youth career playing at Hull City, became the first English footballer to come out in 30 years when he announced he was gay last week.
And Beattie believes it is up to the individual as to whether they want to be one of the first to come out as a great deal of commotion comes with it.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, he said: "We're still at a point where this has not really moved too much.
"I definitely wouldn't urge anyone to do it, in all honesty, and the reason I say that is because I think it needs to be on your own time.
"As one of the first few trailblazers in that kind of industry, you're going have to go through a lot of fire.
"To do that you need to be fully confident, you know, 'I'm gay, I'm playing professional sport'."
Beattie is the first English player to come out since Justin Fashanu did in 1990.
Fashanu committed suicide eight years later.
During a podcast with Louis Theroux earlier this month, Watford captain Troy Deeney said it is likely there is a gay player in every Premier League team.
He said: "I would go on record saying that there is probably one gay or bi person in every football team. They’re there, they are 100% there.
“I think people that are gay or from that community definitely are very worried about having to shoulder the responsibility of being the first. I think once the first comes out, there would be loads."