He’s not even an adult yet, but Jake Daniels showed maturity beyond his years when he became the only active male pro football player to come out as gay.
The 17-year-old, who plays for Blackpool in the English Second Division, has been widely praised for his courage.
But what about other European countries?
AT France, not a single active professional footballer ever came out. French striker Olivier Rouyet has come out as gay after he retired from playing and coaching.
Over the weekend, French Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 players were asked to wear rainbow colored jerseys as part of the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia on 17 May.
But Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Idrissa Gouillet was ruled out of the club’s match against Montpellier for “personal reasons”.
RMC Sport informed he refused to play because he didn’t want to wear the colors of the rainbow.
On Wednesday, the National Council of Ethics (CNE) of the French Football Federation (FFF) asked Guye to explain whether he refuses to wear an LGBT-colored shirt.
In a letter seen by the AFP news agency, the Senegalese footballer was asked to recognize the accusations as unfounded or to correct them.
Daniels said he was inspired to come out by Australian footballer Josh Cavallo, who in October 2021 became the only active male pro playing top football to come out as gay.
Shortly after this revelation, a soccer player playing Spain wrote to Cadena SER media and admitted that he is bisexual and is currently living with his male partner.
“First of all, I would like to express my deep gratitude to Joshua Cavallo for sharing his feelings with all of us,” he said. “Now to say how he is, yes, that you can play football as gay, bisexual, as I consider myself, or someone else.
AT Italy, no active professional football player has ever come out.
And here is the former player of the Roman club “Lazio” Thomas Hitzlperger from Germany, came out in 2014, at that time he was one of the most famous players who admitted that he was gay.
Hitzlsperger, who spent most of his career at Aston Villa and Stuttgart, chose to wait until after his career before making a confession.