Paul Pogba Insists Gay Players in Premier League Would Receive Nothing But Respect

Thursday August 24th, 2017

Speaking at the launch of UEFA's RESPECT initiative in Monaco, Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has insisted that gay footballers would receive nothing but respect in the Premier League.  

The 24-year-old admits he has not met a gay footballer in the English top flight, but admits any player who revealed that they were gay would immediately have his respect as they are still 'a human being.'

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With stars across football coming together to promote diversity, fan culture and accessibility within football, Pogba, a devout Muslim, was asked if the Premier League would provide a safe and secure environment for a gay player.

He said, via Goal: "That's something that I've never seen but why not? It's a human being.

"What he does in his private life has nothing to do with the player. You just have to respect him. Because he respects you, you respect him. That's it.

"It's all about respect. It's all about equality everywhere in the world. We are all equal when we play football.

Former Aston Villa and West Ham player Thomas Hitzlsperger is the only Premier League player to reveal that he is gay, which he did so after his retirement from the game. 

A number of concerns and issues could potentially come to the fore at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, including racism, but Pogba has claimed it is the players who share the responsibility in spreading the right message to supporters.

He added: "We can play with Chinese people, African guys, French, American, but we're all equal when we do what we love on the pitch, and that's the message we want to give to everyone.

"It's a big thing, the World Cup, and we all play to win. But there has always been the respect on the pitch and outside the pitch and we hope that nothing is going to happen.

"Hopefully nothing will happen but we can just talk, help each other, and talk about racism and equality on the pitch. We can't really do anything about it but give everyone a good message to avoid those things."

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