[QODLink]
Football
Time for gay footballers to come out?
German football federation president says public ready to accept gay players but German captain Philipp Lahm isn't sure
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2012 18:02
German captain Phillip Lahm disagrees with Zwanziger saying public would not accept gay players [GALLO/GETTY] 

The departing German football federation president says it's time for gay players to come out.

Theo Zwanziger, who will leave the post in March, called on gay players "to have the courage to declare themselves,'' although he conceded it was surely difficult to acknowledge one's homosexuality within a team.

Zwanziger pointed to the example of Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit, who came out years ago.

Speaking at a discussion on the subject organised by the federation,Zwanziger said on Tuesday that society was more understanding than a few years ago for any gays in football willing to out themselves.

Germany captain Philipp Lahm, however, disagrees.

"Football is like being the gladiators in the old times,'' Lahm said in an interview published on Monday.

"The politicians can come out these days, for sure, but they don't have to play in front of 60,000 people every week.

"I don't think that the society is that far ahead that it can accept homosexual players as something normal as in other areas.''

Zwanziger said Lahm is a tolerant person "and if that's how he sees the situation, I am not going to be the one to criticise him.''

No player in Germany's professional leagues has so far acknowledged his homosexuality.

Source:
AP
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Israel's Operation Protective Edge is the third major offensive on the Gaza Strip in six years.
Muslims and Arabs in the US say they face discrimination in many areas of life, 13 years after the 9/11 attacks.
At one UN site alone, approximately four children below the age of five are dying each day.
Featured
More than fifty years of an armed struggle for independence from Spain might be coming to an end in the Basque Country.
After the shooting-down of flight MH17, relatives ask what the carrier has learned from still-missing MH370.
Human rights and corporate responsibility prompt a US church to divest from companies doing business with Israel.
Afghan militias have accumulated a lengthy record of human-rights abuses, including murders and rapes.
Growing poverty is strengthening a trend among UK Muslims to fund charitable work closer to home.
join our mailing list