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Radio presenter comes out as gay on camera for BBC's The One Show

He hopes the short film will inspire other sportsmen to come out

2018-01-23

BBC's The One Show aired an emotional moment when radio presenter Richie Anderson came out as gay on camera to his football team. 

The BBC show's cameras followed the radio presenter over the last week as he studied the impact of coming out as gay in the sports world for a short The One Show film that aired yesterday (January 22).

The presenter has been out to his family and friends for years, but explained that he hadn't come out sooner to his teammates because he feared rejection. 

During the short film, Anderson said: "My friends know and my family know, but as soon as I'm on a football pitch, it just feels like a taboo. Why am I and other gay footballers keeping quiet?" 

Over the week, Anderson met with several other gay footballers and people who have been promoting tolerance in sports.

He met with Paul Elliott from the Football Assocation (FA) Inclusion Advisory Board and the pair discussed what is being done to tackle homophobia in sport.

He also met with a gay footballer manager who has previously managed gay players. The film ended with Anderson calling his teammates in for a meeting after a victory last Sunday (January 21) and opening up. 

Speaking about his One Show film, he said: "One of the big issues we've looked at, it's really close to my heart."

"It's homophobia in football. And the reason why that means a lot to me is that I'm a gay footballer. I just wanted to be open and honest because with you lot, it's just been class." 

Instead of facing rejection, Anderson was met with hugs and handshakes as his teammembers praised him for coming out and insisted it wouldn't affect his relationship with team.

The presenter then appeared in the studio after the short film aired to talk about his experience and said he hopes the film will help other sportsmen come out. 

He said: "The main thing is, I hope there are people watching who are in the same boat as I'm in, and they think, 'You know what? I can do that as well.'"