The treasurer of Mersey Marauders Soccer Membership believes Jake Daniels’ determination to return out because the UK’s solely brazenly homosexual male footballer is a large step in the appropriate route for the game.
Francis Wight has defined how the Blackpool teenager may develop into the right function mannequin for thus many males in soccer after he turned the first skilled within the UK males’s sport for greater than 30 years to return out whereas nonetheless taking part in.
Daniels, who publicly got here out as homosexual in an interview with Sky Sports activities on Monday, spoke about how he was ‘eager to interrupt the stigma’ and the way he felt able to be himself after ‘such a very long time of mendacity’ about who he was when explaining his determination to go public.
“It is massive news. I’m shocked by it, to be honest, it is something that myself and a lot of my team-mates think about a lot as we are all football fans,” Wight instructed the ECHO.
“We all love playing and we all love watching our teams. It is one of those things you watch out for but never think is going to happen.
“It has been such a long time since a professional footballer in this country came out. But, to be honest, the main feeling is so much admiration for him.
“It is incredibly brave for a 17-year-old in that sort of level of scrutiny and under such a glaring spotlight to come out. He is such an incredible role model to so many young people. It is amazing news.”
Earlier than Wight continued: “It’s one thing that’s actually essential to the membership is that soccer is for everybody and one thing that loads of our gamers have skilled is homophobia in sport.
“That might usually put individuals off taking part in after they have been in school or youthful and what we would like is a society the place soccer is an encouraging inclusive place for everybody.
“This is a really good step in that direction because it demonstrates to people that it doesn’t matter what sexuality you are, what gender you are, football is there to be enjoyed as a sport. This is a really encouraging step in that direction.”
Formally shaped in 2008, the Marauders’ goal is to supply LGBT+ individuals the chance to play soccer in a supportive and inclusive surroundings. The thought for the membership got here from former participant Steve Hess, who performed for the well-known LGBT+ group Stonewall FC in London.
And Wight has spoken of his satisfaction after having the ability to create an surroundings the place individuals can meet, play and really feel secure whereas doing one thing they love.
He mentioned: “Something I’m really proud of at the club is that we have got players who have never really been put off playing football.
“They are quite confident players who have been playing all their lives. But then we do have people who might have liked football and went to one or two games who have never played before.
“They have been looking for an environment where they can feel welcome and they do feel they have people around them who do similar things to them.
“I’m really proud we are able to create that space for people who are less confident and who can come along, play football, make friends and build a community around something they love.”
Mersey Marauders are all the time on the lookout for new gamers who outline themselves as LGBT+ and if anybody is keen on becoming a member of the membership then they need to contact the membership by way of e-mail on firstname.lastname@example.org or by way of Fb.