Italy striker Antonio Cassano apologizes for derogatory comments on homosexuals at Euro 2012
Antonio Cassano has publically apologized because of the derogatory comments he made in reference to homosexuals. The Italy international Antonio Cassano was forced to come out with a statement which denied he was a homophobe.
The AC Milan striker was caught amidst controversy when he made rude and belittling comments in reference to homosexual during a press conference at Euro 2012.
“I am sincerely sorry that my declarations have sparked controversy and protests in the gay community: homophobia is a feeling that does not belong to me,” Antonio Cassano said in a statement published on the official website of the Italian Football Federation. “I did not want to offend anyone and in no way do I want to question the sexual freedom of people.”
Earlier, Antonio Cassano used a vulgar term to describe homosexuals and showed tendencies of alienating homosexuals.
“If they are faggots, it is their problem,” Antonio Cassano said when he was asked about his knowledge of any gay footballers in Italy’s squad.
“I am not saying more, otherwise I will be attacked from all sides,” Antonio Cassano continued. “I hope there is none in the Nazionale.”
Antonio Cassano was caught off guard by a journalist when he questioned the Italian forward about a recent book about homosexuality in sports. The book, ‘The champion in love’ written by Cecchi Paone, informs about two gay players in the Italian national team.
Franco Grillini, who is a politician and gay rights activist, came up with a strong response to the book. According to Franco Grillini, “football is a deposit of sexism and vulgar machismo, which leads to homophobia.”
Franco Grillini reminded that Italy’s head coach Cesare Prandelli, who wrote an introduction to a book by Cecchi Paone, is against homophobia. As a matter of fact, Cesare Prandelli has labelled homophobia in football as a form of racism.
“Now Cassano should at least apologize and his coach should send him home,” Franco Grillini said in a press release.
The Italian commentator Fabrizio Bocca reckons Antonio Cassano’s words could do a lot of damage in the football world.
Fabrizio Bocca issued his statement on the website of daily La Repubblica which said Antonio Cassano’s derogatory homosexual comments words “were a very bad figure for the Nazionale and Italy, about which a prompt apology is necessary.”