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Britain's first and only out gay footballer Justin Fashanu to be inducted into Hall of Fame

The footballer came out in 1990 but tragically took his own life eight years later

2020-02-18

Words: Steve Brown

Justin Fashanu will be inducted into the National Football Museum’s Hall of Fame.

The footballer – who is best known for playing for various teams including Norwich City – made history after becoming Britain’s first and only gay male professional footballer after coming out in 1990.

However, eight years after coming out, he faced allegations of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old boy in the US state of Maryland – where homosexual acts were still illegal.

He was charged and an arrest warrant for him was issued in Howard County, Maryland on 3 April 1998, but he had already left his flat.

According to his suicide note, fearing he would not get a fair trial because of his homosexuality, he fled to England where he killed himself in London in May 1998.

His suicide note stated that the sex was consensual.

And now, this week, Fashanu will posthumously inducted into the National Football Museum's Hall of Fame in Manchester.

Fashanu's niece Amal, who runs The Justin Fashanu Foundation, will receive the award on what would have been her uncle's 59th birthday.

Amal told Sky Sports News: "I think he wouldn't believe it himself.

“I know he would be extremely honoured, and I know that I am extremely honoured and so is my family.”