President of the Players’ Association Damiano Tommasi admits “homosexuality in football is still taboo and I wouldn’t recommend coming out.”
The former Roma midfielder and chief of the AIC was talking to journalist Klaus Davi about the still thorny issue.
“Homosexuality in football is still taboo,” admitted Tommasi. “In this sport the players practically live with each other, it’s different to every other profession.
“Expressing your sexual preferences is difficult in all environments, even more so for a player who shares the locker room, which is an intimate space, with others.
“In our world there could be embarrassment. A sport where one gets undressed can make it more difficult when working together.”
Many have urged players to come out of the closet and confess their sexuality, therefore taking away the taboo, but Tommasi surprisingly chooses the complete opposite approach.
“I wouldn’t recommend coming out. However, I can exclude that in football there is talk of fear. Rather it is a personal issue. I don’t think one needs to talk about his sexual preferences in order to work or live in a civil environment.
“In the football world, everything that emerges from the locker room becomes a boomerang, even for those who want to bring a situation to light.
“Personally, I have never known gay football players. Maybe I did and just didn’t realise they were homosexual.”