‘I’m always there for support’: Coady wins LGBT accolade

Jason Soutar
Conor Coady

Wolves captain Conor Coady has won the Football Ally accolade at the British LGBT Awards and offers support for any footballer who is considering coming out.

Coady was given the one-off award which highlights the lack of visible representation of male professional footballers who are gay or bisexual.

The England international has been a strong supporter of Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign for LGBT+ inclusion in sport, using his voice to raise awareness of the cause.

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During last year’s event, Coady took part in a special Football Association event alongside Stonewall FC captain Jay Lemonius, hosted by Sky Sports News’ Mark McAdam, which explored the symbolism of the armband and the value of inclusive leadership.

McAdam presented the defender with the award at the event held at The Brewery in London.

Coady said: “I’m very honoured to accept the Football Ally award, and very flattered to have been selected amongst such a high profile and exceptional list of nominees.

“Despite being humbled to receive this award, I have to say that the support I have given to the LGBT+ community is not anything over and above what any ally should give, and is only what I think anyone in my position should be able to offer.

“As I’ve said before, and I will say again, I am always there for any footballer who wants the support of a senior professional, and an ally, if they want to take the next step on their personal journey to come out as LGBT+.

“I want to reiterate that every single person, no matter their gender or sexuality, deserves to be themselves no matter what path in life they choose to take.

“I hope we can soon get to a day when a football player feels supported enough to be their true selves on the football field, but until that day, we all have some work to do.”

Also recognised in the Football Ally category were Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson and Reds manager Jurgen Klopp; Sky Sports pundit Graeme Souness; Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin; defender Gary Cahill, now at Bournemouth; TV presenter Gary Lineker; and strikers Jamie Vardy (Leicester), Richarlison (Everton) and Danny Welbeck (Brighton).