Everton legend Neville Southall has criticised the FA for their role in promoting LGBT rights in football.
Speaking on The Greatest Game with Jamie Carragher, Southall spoke candidly about the lack of acceptance in football, his role and what more could be done.
“Nobody makes a fuss about it and I think the FA are hopeless at doing anything.
“Rainbow laces is a tick box because I have never seen anything on the pitch. I have asked Everton a few times because what I want is the Rainbow Toffees to come on the pitch at half time and play because that would normalise it.”
He similarly called on the country’s major broadcasters to help push the issue on their coverage.
“I would like to see Sky Sports take a more prominent part. As far as I know, nobody has anybody to explain it in the studio and nobody has anybody from the LGBT in the commentary.”
His initial participation in promoting LGBT rights came in an attempt to educate himself when a pupil at his referral unit in Ebbw Vale was on the verge of coming out as gay.
He eventually contacted various support groups for guidance and has since become active himself in helping the promotion of LGBT rights.
Speaking about the progression since his playing days, Neville Southall recollected on the abuse he saw Justin Fashanu receive when Everton played Scottish side Hearts in the 1990’s.
“The amount of stick he got was horrendous. I don’t know how he got through that game because it was merciless.”
The former Welsh international does however believe an high-profile male footballer will come out in the near future.
“Somebody somewhere will know somebody who is gay in football and it will come out, but I would rather the FA and the clubs take strides in teaching the younger generations through the academies.
“By the time 20 people come out, nobody will care about it and it will become normalised.”
The MBE honorary regularly uses his large Twitter platform to educate people about LGBT issues.
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