Historic Moment: First Male Top-tier Professional Soccer Player To Come Out As Gay Gets Engaged

Australian soccer player, Josh Cavallo, made history as the first openly gay male professional player in the top-tier sport. In a beautiful display of love and courage, he proposed to his partner on the field at his team’s home stadium.

Adelaide United midfielder, Cavallo, took to social media on Wednesday to announce his engagement to his fiancé, Leighton Morrell. Expressing his gratitude for the unwavering support from his A-League club, Cavallo also shared how they assisted him in making the proposal on the field at Coopers Stadium in South Australia.

Cavallo expressed gratitude for the football team in providing a safe environment where he could truly be himself. He never imagined such acceptance would be possible. The team’s support has inspired him to live authentically every day. Cavallo felt it was fitting to share this significant moment on the very pitch where his journey began. Several photos captured the scene, showing Cavallo down on one knee, popping the question, and the heartwarming moments that followed.

Cavallo made his engagement announcement over two years after he publicly came out in a video that was posted by his team. In the video, he acknowledged the challenges of trying to perform while leading a double life and expressed his desire for others to avoid going through the same exhausting struggle.

“When I was young, I constantly felt the need to conceal my true self due to the shame I carried. I feared that I would never be able to pursue my passion for football while also embracing my identity as a gay individual. All I ever wanted was to play the sport I love and be treated with the same respect and equality as anyone else,” he expressed candidly.


In the world of professional men’s soccer, only a few players have had the courage to publicly reveal their sexual orientation as gay. One notable example is Andy Brennan, a player for the semi-pro team South Melbourne Football Club, who made history in 2019 by becoming the first Australian professional men’s player to come out while still actively playing. Another player who bravely shared his truth is Jakub Jankto, a midfielder from the Czech Republic, who disclosed last year that he is gay. These two athletes are currently the only openly gay players on top-tier teams.

It’s worth mentioning Robbie Rogers, a former member of the U.S. national team, who made his announcement in 2013 when he decided to retire from professional soccer. However, he later returned to the sport, playing for the Los Angeles Galaxy and becoming the first openly gay player in Major League Soccer. Their stories serve as powerful reminders of the ongoing journey towards inclusivity and acceptance in the world of professional soccer.

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