German captain Philipp Lahm has a new book coming out and to ensure it sells more copies than Michael Ballack can burn, he's done his best to say controversial things in it. He's already apologized for criticism in the book of the DFB and it also takes shots at his international teammates, as well as Jogi Low and former coach Juergen Klinsmann. But in addition to all that, he addresses rumors that have apparently been circulating about his own sexuality.
From the AP:
"First, I am not a homosexual. I am not married to my wife Claudia for appearances and I do not have a friend in Cologne with whom I really live," Lahm wrote in the book entitled "A Subtle Difference."
"This speculation doesn't matter to me," he said referring to rumours about a male companion in Cologne [that he takes the time to deny in the very same book]. "I have nothing against homosexuals and I find that there is nothing wrong with homosexuality."
"But it never ceases to amaze me that these isolated types, who tell these stories, can have a lot of influence on public opinion. 'Philipp Lahm homosexual' (…) do you not have anything more important to talk about?" he said.
He however advised professional footballers against coming out, referring specifically to Justin Fashanu, the first professional player in Britain to publicly reveal his homosexuality.
Fashanu, who, after his disclosure, spoke about deep-seated anti-gay prejudice in professional football, killed himself in 1998.
So, to recap, Lahm is denying speculation -- which doesn't matter to him! -- that he's gay and advises professional footballers -- which he is -- to not say they're gay (if they are).
Good enough for me. We now resume our regular business of not caring about Philipp Lahm's sexual orientation. Meanwhile, Ballack tries to come up with a new a Lahm rumor to spread...
UPDATE: Here's a more complete translation of the passage on this subject, along with a story about the time a guy showed up at his house and said he loved him.
- Philipp Lahm
- Michael Ballack