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Footballer Zander Murray receives ‘amazing’ messages of support after coming out as gay

‘It fills my heart with so much joy’: Zander Murray receives ‘amazing’ messages of support after lower league striker becomes first senior Scottish footballer to come out as gay

  • Gala Fairydean Rovers striker Zander Murray revealed he is gay last week
  • The 30-year-old admitted he has been blown away by messages of support
  • He said: ‘It fills my heart with so much joy and to sit here I am so humbled’
  • Murray’s announcement follows Blackpool’s Jake Daniels, who came out in May
  • Daniels became the first active professional football player to come out since 1990
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Footballer Zander Murray says he has been overwhelmed by 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 struggling to open up.

It comes after Blackpool midfielder Jake Daniels in May became the first active UK professional player since Justin Fashanu in 1990 to come out.

Forward Zander Murray has been inundated with messages of support since coming out as gay
Forward Zander Murray has been inundated with messages of support since coming out as gay

Forward Zander Murray has been inundated with messages of support since coming out as gay

Murray, 30, who is in his fourth season with the Lowland League club, said the past few days have been a whirlwind and he feels ‘humbled’ by the positive response from people.

He told BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme: ‘It’s been crazy, to be honest.

‘I didn’t anticipate the reach it’s reached and how many people it’s inspired and motivated and the lovely messages.

The Gala Fairydean Rovers star became the first senior Scottish footballer to reveal he is gay
The Gala Fairydean Rovers star became the first senior Scottish footballer to reveal he is gay

The Gala Fairydean Rovers star became the first senior Scottish footballer to reveal he is gay

‘The private messages from people and fans alike, people from other communities, from other sports, footballers in the leagues messaging me, asking for guidance and help.

‘It fills my heart with so much joy and sitting here I am so humbled. It is fantastic.’

Blackpool midfielder Jake Daniels became Britain's first active professional footballer to come out since Justin Fashanu in 1990
Blackpool midfielder Jake Daniels became Britain's first active professional footballer to come out since Justin Fashanu in 1990

Blackpool midfielder Jake Daniels became Britain’s first active professional footballer to come out since Justin Fashanu in 1990

In an interview with his club website last week, Murray said being open about his sexuality ‘feels like the weight of the world is now off my shoulders’.

Asked how much of a barrier football was for him to be open about it, he told the BBC: ‘It’s been so challenging, mainly in my head, to be brutally honest, I’ve just caused so many problems with it .

‘And obviously things have happened in the past that have eaten away at my mind, and not having many role models growing up, that was a huge challenge for me.’

He said it has been great to see other players open about their sexuality, such as Daniels and referees Craig Napier and Lloyd Wilson, who revealed they were gay in June, and Australian player Josh Cavallo.

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

He said: ‘These are huge role models for our game and our younger generations, a young me, if I had it, you know maybe things could have been different, but I never have.

“So I think it’s incredible to have these people and I hope I can play a small part in doing that for the rest of my life, the rest of my life, even when I stop playing football .”

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