Read time:1 minute, 34 seconds

Belgian defender Carl Hoefkens says he played with two gay players during his 4 years in the Premier league and Championship in England.

Thankfully, he didn’t say who they were out of “respect” but he described one of them as a “really big name”.

Carl Hoefkens didn’t name the players out of respect

This month FA Chariman Greg Clarke revealed he’s been trying to talk to gay footballers but “not one” was willing to come forward.

Despite attitudes to homosexuality becoming more liberal, no Premier League footballers have come out since the tragic case of Justin Fashanu in the 1990s.

Hoefkins played for Stoke City and West Bromwich Albion and has campaigned as a straight ally for LGBT+ rights in the game, appearing on the cover of a gay magazine in 2012.

In an interview with newspaper, De Zontag, he revealed: “One even came to the training with his friend.

“But they asked to shut up to the outside world. Do not ask me why.”

When asked by the journalist to name the clubs the players were at, he replied: “One was at Club Brugge, and the other two were in England.

“I can not name names. I respect the question of those players.

“I also hope that a big player will finally get up and say: ‘I’m gay, so what’.

“Then that taboo can finally disappear. I would definitely do if I were gay.

“Today is that generally accepted in society? This is the time.”

Ex Aston Villa winger Thomas Hitzlsperger came out after retiring from football in 2013.

Despite the progression of LGBT rights, it’s believed a number of well-loved Premiership football players remain in the closet.

Peter Clayton, who chairs the FA’s Homophobia in Football pressure group, has accused clubs of preventing players from coming out for commercial reasons.



About the author

Andy West

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Latest articles