Well this is BIG. Today Robbie Rogers, 25, formerly of Columbus Crew, Leeds United, Stevenage, the USMNT, tweeted the following:
That link takes you to his website, where he comes out as gay, at the same time seemingly retiring from football.
I'd strongly advise you to go read the whole thing, it's not that long, but there's a few quotes that really get to the heart of why the increased recent push against homophobia in sports is a very good and necessary thing.
For the past 25 year I have been afraid, afraid to show whom I really was because of fear. Fear that judgment and rejection would hold me back from my dreams and aspirations. Fear that my loved ones would be farthest from me if they knew my secret. Fear that my secret would get in the way of my dreams.
Dreams of going to a World Cup, dreams of The Olympics, dreams of making my family proud. What would life be without these dreams? Could I live a life without them?
Sadly, for the 25 year old Rogers who could very easily have a long career ahead of him at at least the MLS level, it also includes this line;
Now is my time to step away. It’s time to discover myself away from football.
Hopefully this may help future players be able to come out without having to leave the game, and hopefully it's merely a temporary thing and Rogers will be able to get back into the game if he wants at some point.
We'll have more on this, and the reaction/fallout (seems very positive from what I've seen so far) later. For now though, and whatever the future holds for Rogers, huge kudos for him for what he's done today. Well done Robbie