10 December 2020

Brighton & Hove Albion boss Hope Powell says being gay ‘hasn’t hindered her career’

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Hope Powell believes being gay has not hindered her career in football at all.

The 53 year-old played football for England before becoming a coach in 1998 for the national women’s team, a role she held until 2013.

Four years later, she was appointed manager at the south coast Women’s Super League club where she remains today.

And Powell feels being gay has never impacted her career in the game.

She told the Brighton club website: "There's no hindrance, no outside influence, it allows me to do the best I can in this role. I am a coach, I am the manager of Brighton, not the manager of Brighton who is gay, or the manager of Brighton who is black. It isn't about that, it's about the football, the team and the staff.

"There isn't a spotlight on me because of my sexuality. There might be a spotlight on me because I manage a football team – it's not to do with sexuality, it's to do with football.

"I can only speak from the perspective of the women's game and I have had no issue with it. The club support it, the environments I have had the privilege to work in it's not even spoken about, that's really important.

"I am very open as are a lot of players in the game, it's widely accepted. It hasn't ever hindered my career in the game which is fantastic. It's not about outing anybody – if there are gay players we have to respect their privacy, but campaigns like Rainbow Laces show there are safe spaces for people who want to talk about their sexuality and that's really important."

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