LA Galaxy winger Robbie Rogers says
coming out gay has taught him to give people a chance.
The 26-year-old Rogers, who debuted
with the LA Galaxy after coming out gay and announcing his retirement
from soccer, made his remarks in a BBC Newsnight interview.
When asked if he had heard from
colleagues who wanted to come out, Rogers answered no.
“I haven't received, you know, a
letter, a text or anything from one footballer who wants to talk
about those kinds of issues. I've received phone calls and I've
spoken with all my friends here in the UK and around the world that
have supported me, but I haven't had one message from a footballer,”
Rogers explained that he had quit
soccer when he came out because he was terrified that he would be
shunned by teammates, but that the response had been overwhelmingly
“And what was it like when you
discovered that your anxiety about how people would react had been
misplaced?” host Jeremy Paxman asked.
“I mean there's two sides to it.
Sometimes people say, 'Do you think footballers make a bigger deal
out of it than it is.' Or athletes. And I say, 'No. Definitely
not.' That's the reason why they're not coming out, because they
hear so many things that scare them. But my mom said to me, 'Have
you learned that you should give people a chance, as well? Give
people a chance to get to know you.' … I did learn that lesson from
this. You know, to be open with people and give people a chance.”
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