English soccer star slams selection of Qatar, Russia for World Cup

By : Staff Report
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London – A leading figure within the English Football Association says she won’t go to the World Cups in Qatar and Russia because of their anti-gay laws.

Casey Stoney, the England women’s team captain, says FIFA has set the wrong example by awarding its showpiece men’s events to those countries.
Stoney, who is gay, told the BBC: ”I won’t be going to Russia or Qatar to watch a World Cup because I wouldn’t be accepted there.”

Stoney says she has decided to speak publicly about being gay after the positive reaction to diver Tom Daley saying he was in a relationship with a man late last year.

Former Aston Villa midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger retired before revealing he was gay last month, while former Leeds and current LA Galaxy forward Robbie Rogers has also come out.

But Stoney, who has 116 caps for England, is now the most high-profile active gay footballer in England.

“I was living a lie,” she told the BBC. “I’ve never hidden it within football circles because it is accepted. But to the outside world, I’ve never spoken about my sexuality.”

The Arsenal Ladies defender went on to say “I feel it’s really important for me to speak out as a gay player because there are so many people struggling who are gay, and you hear about people taking their own lives because they are homosexual. That should never happen.”

Russia, which is currently hosting the Winter Olympics in Sochi ahead of the 2018 World Cup, has come under fire for a law banning homosexual ”propaganda” aimed at minors. In 2022 World Cup host Qatar, homosexual acts are illegal.

Casey says it is ”incredible that these countries get World Cups and Olympics.”

 

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