Following a social media uproar over a naked picture of Orlando Pirates players [alias Orlando Queers] taken moments after their Nedbank Cup victory, coach Vladimir Vermezovic has jokingly urged soccer fans to “keep calm and come out of the closet”.
The frenzy comes amid wide-spread rumors of four Orlando Pirates players coming out as gay, substantiated by damning Instagram pictures of the players touching, cuddling and posing in a manner strictly forbidden by the Leviticus scripture.
“I do acknowledge that some of my players have disclosed to being gay, but this is a private matter which should be treated with the kind of sensitivity it deserves. What my players do behind closed doors is none of my business, as long as they perform on the field,” coach Vermezovic told a Soccer Ladumo journalist.
Although Vermezovic bluntly refused to “name-and-shame” who his gay players where, he admitted that homosexual acts amongst football peers was a norm in camp.
Mamelodi Sundowns coach, Pitso Mosimane, shared the same sentiments, but asserts that this is a “closely guarded secret” in professional football.
With U.S President Barack Obama endorsing and congratulating actors, wrestlers, singers and basketball players currently coming out as gay in America, the same cannot be said in South Africa. However, it is very applaudable and exciting to see that the gay stigma is slowly shifting away.
In the words of our editor-in-chief and seasoned philanthropist, Bassito Panache;
“Sometimes what we hate in others is what we hate in ourselves. Homophobes are often those battling to accept their own homosexuality. Living a lie is not living at all.”
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