Justin Fashanu

England’s first and only openly gay male professional footballer, Justin Fashanu, is inducted into the National Football Museum’s Hall of Fame. The induction comes on what would have been the footballers 59th birthday and coincides with the launch of the National Football Museum’s LGBT+ Tour. Fashanu endured discrimination and prejudice throughout his playing career and posthumously is widely seen as a hero of the LGBT community for coming out. The former striker and Britain’s first black £1million player died by suicide in 1998 aged 37, eight years after coming out publicly.
Proud Canaries officially launched at half time of the Premier League clash against Tottenham, with representatives going onto the pitch with a new banner. I was not only invited and treated like a queen, but I was asked to be an Honorary Chair, having my Black Heart Label Equality fashion brand's logo on their banner to help fight against discrimination.
This week, ex-Aston Villa, West Ham and Everton midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger moved from having status as another Premier league also-ran who retired having never truly justified his wage bill, to the rare pantheon of footballers who have had the courage to come out as gay...
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The word 'change' is stuck in my mind. Not only as a result of the big event that made London the live stage of a global wake up call about female empowerment - Chime for Change - but moreover for the sense of urgency that the recent news has stirred in me.
The ultimate encouragement for a player to come out, would probably be that there were sufficient other gay peers for it not to be such an issue, or at least enough to be able to offer support. As it stands, that day seems a long way off. If the Premier League is to wait for its own Jason Collins, it may be waiting a very long time.
John Fashanu has claimed his brother Justin was not gay. Justin Fashanu, who committed suicide nearly 14 years ago, is the