Scottish football ready for out gay player, says Hibernian CEO

Leeann Dempster, CEO of Scottish football team Hibernian FC, has said that Scotland is ready for its first publicly gay football player.

Speaking to the BBC, Dempster, who is in a civil partnership, said, “I am so proud to be from Scotland because I think it is one of the most progressive countries.

“You are always going to get people who revert – you are never going to get rid of these people. But the vast majority, because of things like equal marriage and the progressive laws here, would be fine.

“There are obviously gay footballers, many of them. One in 10 of the population [is gay], something like that. Well, there are 11 players on the field.”

However, she did acknowledge that coming out as gay would be a brave move, with “a few bumps” along the way, but that her own life had been “enriched” by talking about her homosexuality.

She also pointed out that she was talking about the men’s game, as there are many out players in the women’s game.

There are currently no out players in the men’s professional league.

The only publicly gay footballer in the UK was Justin Fashanu who took his own life in 1998.