Two top level footballers 'to come out as gay'

Two professional footballers - one England player and another Premier League star - are believed to be on the verge of coming out as gay. A report today, which respectfully refrains from naming any names, claims that both sportsmen have told their friends, family and clubs, and will make a public announcement in the coming months. football1 A source told The Mirror: “The stigma has completely gone, and the public are far more accepting. “At this level of football, being gay is almost the final frontier.” They added: “It has always been such a macho game and, unfortunately, perhaps more than in any other sport, there can be an aggressive mob mentality in the stands. “But finally the tide is turning and more and more sports people are openly gay.” The tabloid adds that the Football Association have fully supported both players. The news comes a year after ex-Aston Villa midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger came out, soon after retiring. No male footballer since Justin Fashanu, who took his own life in 1998 and was abused on and off the pitch, has come out while still playing professionally.