Josh Cavallo, an openly gay Australian professional soccer player, recently appeared on the cover of Men’s Health, telling the magazine, in a feature interview, about his experiences, challenges, and successes since coming out as gay last October.
Cavallo, a player for Adelaide United who represented Australia on the team’s “under 20 national team,” noted in the interview that after coming out, he was the only “high caliber” soccer player to be openly homosexual.
He received a wave of support from the football community after releasing an emotional coming out video, which has now been viewed more than 11 million times, reports the Daily Mail. In that video, he said he was done with feeling ashamed about his sexuality and the exhaustion of trying to live a “double-life.”
Even though Cavallo “received a wave of support” from the soccer community after coming out, he still “received threats and abuse” from soccer fans during a game against Melbourne Victory in January. But he said refuses to let his “haters” stop him from performing his job.
“It’s not stopping me, because at the end of the day, I’m saving lives through what I’m doing. And they’re in the crowd, drinking a beer and paying for a ticket to come and watch me,” Cavallo told Men’s Health in the feature story. “The thing that always motivates me is the people that I’m doing this for.”
He says the love and support he’s received from fans helps propel him forward and overcome homophobic taunts or insults.
“Whenever I do come across hate and negativity, all I have to do is open up my phone and see all the messages that are coming through,” he said. “To know that there’s hundreds of thousands of people that I’m helping get through their day and be themselves is incredible.”
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