GAA top referee David Gough asked why some of Ireland’s biggest sports stars are ‘afraid’ of coming out as gay.
The openly gay referee is one of the few Irish sports figures to speak out in recent years, and said his coming out only helped to improve his life as he received nothing but support .
But he noted that there are a lot of athletes in elite sport who haven’t come out, and he asked what are the barriers that prevent them from doing so.
Appearing on Virgin Media this evening, Gough said he believes the barriers in front of these athletes are only perceived barriers.
“There are a huge number of people, not only in the GAA, but in elite sport in Ireland who are afraid to come out (as gay),” Gough said.
“Just look at 64 inter-county teams, the Irish League, we have a huge number of international players playing in the Premiership, we have four provincial teams in rugby, hockey, boxing, we could name a number of sports here. .
“And there aren’t any elite gay male athletes coming out in these sports, you have to ask why? Why are they struggling?
” What are the problems ? What are the obstacles and obstacles that prevent them from going out? “
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He added: “I have only received huge support from my own colleagues on the refereeing panel, I have found the media nothing more than positive, certainly here in this country.
“My life has improved in a positive way since I got out, so I don’t see any major obstacles or obstacles – just perceived barriers – and that’s what I think the problem might be.”