BRUSSELS (BELGIUM) – "As a professional player, I believe it is essential to contribute to raising European public awareness of homophobia". It is a passage from the video of the Sampdoria player Albin Ekdal broadcast today during an event organized in the European Parliament to combat all forms of discrimination against LGBT people in sport and beyond.
Ekdal, his video message to the European Parliament: "Gay, declare yourselves!".
“In an ideal world no one should feel uncomfortable declaring himself homosexual, whether in life or in football – added the player – but unfortunately the reality is very different. In our sport only eight players have officially declared themselves homosexuals, but many others would like to do it, but they don't feel free "to do it," for fear of negative reactions ".
In his video report, the midfielder explained that "these players are concerned about becoming a target for insults", and therefore "feel obliged to hide, flee and live in fear". Ekdal therefore asks to "react" and to use education "as a force for positive change".
It is not the first time that Ekdal has entered the field against homophobia , he had already done so in the past during an interview with Sportbladet:
“They say there are no homosexual footballers. But how do you draw this conclusion? I played soccer in the two major leagues in the world, participating in European cups and also in the World Cup. I have never been on the field with a footballer who was openly homosexual.
The problem could not be clearer: professional football pushes homosexuals away, puts pressure on boys not to outsource those they love. in the changing rooms.
It is not the responsibility of the individual, but mine, ours, and everyone's responsibility to ensure that it does not require courage to dare. It should be easy to tell someone that they are in love. I can not help but welcome everyone in the world of football and others can not do otherwise.
If we do it all together on every possible occasion, on every bus trip, on the road, in any changing room, there will no longer be this problem in the future "(source ANSA, YouTube video).
Source: Blitz Quotidiano