Zander Murray ‘humbled’ by his reaction to coming out as gay

Published by
Peter Kavinsky

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Footballer Zander Murray says he has been overwhelmed with messages of support since becoming the first senior Scottish footballer to come out as gay.

The Gala Fairydean Rovers striker made the announcement last week, saying he made the decision to help others who are struggling to open up.

It comes after Blackpool midfielder Jake Daniels in May became the first active professional player since Justin Fashanu in 1990 to announce he is gay.

Murray, 30, who is in his fourth season with the Lowland League club, said the past few days had been a whirlwind and he felt “humbled” by the positive reaction from people.

He told BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland: ‘It was crazy, I’ll be honest.

“I hadn’t anticipated the reach it has reached and how many people it’s inspired and motivated and the beautiful messages.

“Private messages from people and fans, people from other communities, other sports, football players from leagues send me messages of support, ask me for advice and help.

“It fills my heart with so much joy, and to sit here I’m so humbled. It’s amazing.”

In an interview with his club’s website last week, Murray said being open about his sexuality “makes it feel like the weight of the world is now on my shoulders”.

Not having a lot of role models growing up was a huge challenge for me.

Sander Murray

Asked how football was a barrier to him being open about it, he told the BBC: “It’s been so difficult, mostly in my head, I’m going to be brutally honest, I just created so much trouble with it.

“And obviously things have happened in the past that tormented my mind, and not having a lot of role models growing up was a huge challenge for me.”

He said it was great to see other players talking openly about their sexuality, like Daniels and referees Craig Napier and Lloyd Wilson, who in June revealed they were gay, and Australian player Josh Cavallo.

Murray said he hopes he can serve as a role model for other players as well.

He said: “They’re great role models for our game and our younger generations, a younger me if I had that, you might know things could have been different, but I never did.

“So I think having these people is amazing and hopefully I can play a small part in that for the rest of my life, for the rest of my life even when I stop playing football.”

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Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at cablefreetv.org

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