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Amal Fashanu, daughter of John Fashanu, says she knows seven gay footballers in the Premier League but would never out them.
Amal starred in BBC Three documentary Britain’s Gay Footballers after the death of her uncle Justin Fashanu in 1998. Justin killed himself after coming out and facing a media backlash.
Amal said gay footballers are trapped in a ‘dark world’ of secrecy.
Amal said to BBC Radio 5 Live, ‘I actually know myself of seven. I will never, ever share their details.
‘I’m not going to out them because I would never do that.
‘You want to be honest, even to help them out, but you just can’t do that. The football world is extremely dark.
‘I don’t even want to imagine being a footballer, what it must be like.’
Thomas Hitzlsperger, who came out in 2014 after retiring, was the first person to have played in the Premier League and subsequently come out. The German hoped to change attitudes by coming out.
Robbie Rogers, a former Leeds United midfielder who now plays for LA Galaxy, said he would retire after coming out at 25. He subsequently changed his mind to seal a move back to the MLS in 2013.