Inside Israel

In first, soccer club faces disciplinary action over fans’ anti-gay chants

In a precedent in Israel, a soccer club will face a disciplinary hearing over homophobic chants by its fans during a match, the Kan public broadcaster reported Sunday.

At the 13th minute of Saturday’s Israel Premier League bout, fans of Maccabi Tel Aviv repeatedly shouted, “Danny Amos is gay” at the goalkeeper of the rival Maccabi Netanya.

While he is not a member of the LGBTQ community, Amos has a gay brother and is a vocal supporter of LGBTQ rights. He has been teased for this by fans of other teams on several occasions in the past.

At one point, he complained about the chants to the referee.

The Aguda – Israel’s LGBT Task Force said in response: “In a reality where ‘gay’ and ‘sissy’ are the most common slurs on the soccer pitch, and in which proud athletes fear that coming out of the closet will end their careers, this creates an unsafe space for LGBT in Israeli sports. The Football Association’s decision to prosecute over anti-gay slurs is an important one that will aid in ridding the pitch of homophobia.”

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