Frank Clark discusses issue of homophobia in football
Frank Clark, Vice Chair of the League Managers Association, has spoken to an anti-homophobia football site about homophobia and his experiences with Justin Fashanu.
Tackle, the new independent editorial addressing homophobia in football, is featuring the exclusive interview with Clark, the former Nottingham Forest and Manchester City manager.
The website, which aims to break the silence within the game on homophobia, spoke to Clark about his experience as a top flight manager in the nineties, the League Managers Association and his critical role in Justin Fashanu coming out.
“Myself and the physio tried to persuade him, but he was terrified. He was scared to do it. And I could understand. We knew initially there would be headlines but thought that would disappear. It definitely wouldn’t be a problem in the dressing room. The lads thought the world of him.”
On Brian Clough’s relationship with Fashanu, Clark said: “Brian was very autocratic and Justin was a bit of a maverick. I think Justin was so powerful an individual that he found that very difficult.”
Addressing the PFA’s concerns that fans aren’t ready to accept a gay player, he feels sure the tide is turning, “That was my feeling two or three years ago, the more I’ve got involved I think it would surprise people. The media would be the problem. But it will happen and it will be dealt with.”
Through opinion, interviews and debate with football fans in the arts and media – both gay and straight – Tackle hopes to draw a more vocal response from those within the game itself.
For the full interview with Frank Clark, please visit www.tacklemedia.co.uk