Australian footballer Josh Cavallo become the first top-level professional footballer to come out after posting a coming out video to his club’s Twitter account. The 21-year-old says he’s known he was gay for six years and is ready to release the weight from his shoulders.
“There’s something personal that I need to share with everyone. I’m a footballer and I’m gay,” he starts in what feels like a reality TV confessional.
“Growing up I always felt the need to hide myself because I was ashamed – ashamed I would never be able to do what I love and be gay. Hiding who I truly am to pursue a dream I always wished for as a kid.”
Cavallo explains all he’s wanted is to “play football and be treated equally” and is tired of living a double-life.
“Coming out to my loved ones, my peers, my friends, my teammates, my coaches has been incredible. The response and support I have received is immense.”
In a text statement, he said he “couldn’t be happier with my decision to come out.”
Yes, that is correct: he has done a video statement and a written one. Personally, we feel that the text coming out story in enough. Is it a big deal? Yes. Is coming out something that needs to be dramatised? No.
It’s just one step away from Colton Underwood.
Regardless, we’re hoping that Josh’s move does help sportsmen – especially footballers – to come out of the closet and destigmatize queer people in sport.
According to The BBC there are currently no openly gay footballers (besides Cavallo) at the top tiers of the sport, but former Newcastle Jets player, Andy Brennan, who came out in 2019, became Australia’s first professional male footballer while still an active player.