Chelsea star Olivier Giroud understands challenges gay footballers face when coming out

The footballer has been an advocate for the LGBT community


Words: Steve Brown

Chelsea star Olivier Giroud said he understands the “pain and the difficulty” for gay footballers to come out.

Currently there are no LGBT Premier League footballers and Giroud – who has been an advocate for the LGBT community – believes there is still a long way to go before players feel comfortable enough to come out.

He told Le Figaro: “When I saw Thomas Hitzlsperger come out back in 2014, it was very emotional.

“It was at this time that I thought that it is impossible to be openly homosexual in football.

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“In the dressing room, there is a lot of testosterone, teasing and collective showers. It is delicate, but that is how it is.

“I can understand the pain and the difficulty for guys in coming out – it is a real challenge and it takes year of work on yourself.

“When I joined Montpellier, I got involved in the fight for tolerance and was on the cover of [French gay magazine] Tetu.

“At Arsenal, when asked, I wore rainbow laces in support of the gay community.”