Anton Hysen | European Football | Sports

Gay Footballer Anton Hysén Defends His Father

Anton Hysén, the first European footballer to come out as gay, is defending his father, former Liverpool FC defender Glenn Hysén, who had been accused of homophobia after he assaulted a man who groped him in an airport bathroom in 2001.

The elder Hysén (above) surprisingly delivered the opening remarks during Stockholm Pride in 2007. His well-received speech at the event encouraged athletes to be open about their sexuality and he spoke about the prevalence of homophobia in sports.

Anton The 20-year-old Sweden, who also reveals that he was the boy in his father's speech at Pride, defends him in the Guardian:

"Until now only my family and friends have known about my sexuality – well I think so, at least. That was the funniest thing when my dad made that speech. When he was talking about 'a 16-year-old who didn't want to come out because he feared what his team‑mates would think', that was me. And people thought it so bloody strange that he was allowed to speak at the Pride Festival, that he was a homophobe and so on. Shit, they were so wrong."

Watch a non-English interview with Hysén published before his coming out, AFTER THE JUMP.

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  1. Very cute and his coming out is a good thing for gays in sports.

    This interview was made Jan 2011 during football cup (played inside) in the place called Östgöta. (öst=east) (Östgötä is a province in Sweden)
    I won't translate it for two reason: no relations to gays, too much to write. Sorry.

    Posted by: Matt26 | Mar 13, 2011 1:12:31 PM

  2. so let me understand this.

    the guy was GROPED in a bathroom and because he fended off an assault, a sexual assault no less, he is suddenly a "homophobe"?

    Bullshit like this is exactly what I hate about people! The offender is trying to make himself a victim and that is disgusting!

    Hopefully what ever legal trouble this former coach has will end soon and the creep that groped him goes to jail for a long time.

    It is pathetic because there are at least some of us gays who will try and make hay out of this because they truly believe they can misbehave and should not be penalized for crap like this!

    Posted by: mikenola | Mar 13, 2011 1:13:20 PM

  3. I don't understand the charge of homophobia against Papa Glenn. Taking a swing (or more) at someone who is sexually assaulting you seems like a pretty reasonable course of action (and are women who fight of men who grope them now misandrists?) Was he supposed to just stand there and let it happen? I don't get it.

    Posted by: NaughtyLola | Mar 13, 2011 1:19:38 PM

  4. The kid is cute, but the dad is a FOX. That's no reason some total stranger should have groped him, though. Jeez, people -- try to act civilized even if it doesn't come naturally to you.

    Posted by: Pete | Mar 13, 2011 1:20:41 PM

  5. how is assaulting a man who GROPED him in an airport bathroom homophobia?

    unless, there is more to the story, that is not homophobia, i will also assault someone that gropes me.

    Posted by: johnosahon | Mar 13, 2011 1:25:04 PM

  6. This is what Glenn said at Stockholm Pride:

    "I know that many LGBT people have been the victims of assaults and hate crimes. I can therefore understand if some people have been upset by the airport incident, so I want to be clear: I think that it is completely unacceptable that anybody should be subjected to assaults, insults or hate crimes due to their sexual orientation or gender identity,...The incident had been blown out of proportion in the media...In order to finally flush the Frankfurt Airport punch down the toilet: it is not the case that I beat up a gay person. I categorically deny that,...I'm not proud that I took a swing at him, but I am proud that I have integrity and that I reacted."

    The man is awesome. Case closed.

    Posted by: rw | Mar 13, 2011 2:04:17 PM

  7. A lot of pretty horrible comments on that video.

    @Matt26: It was filmed at the Östgöta ("East Gothlandish", Östergötland is a county a couple of hours southwest of Stockholm) indoor football cup, held at the sports hall in Motala.

    Posted by: Kevin | Mar 13, 2011 2:50:19 PM

  8. The dad's waaaay hotter than his guido-looking son...Hopefully he ages well, but right now he just looks like a Jersey Shore reject in every picture I've seen of him.

    Posted by: Pedro | Mar 13, 2011 2:51:35 PM

  9. Sweden. Is there something in the water or beer over there? Why can't the world be more like Sweden, less like .... well, the list is too long.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 13, 2011 3:23:11 PM

  10. Ok Guido Pedro.

    Posted by: Rowan | Mar 13, 2011 3:30:29 PM

  11. Both Hysen men are extremely accomplished athletes. The boys of Jersey Shore are morons. I dont see the connection here, Pedro. Perhaps you are a moron as well.
    Now, on to the discussion of hotness, Papa and Son are both crazy hot, and it doesnt matter if they are gay or straight because none of us are gonna get to touch them. I am currently praying that the fool in Austin who tried to take a pic of Jake Ggyylleennhhaall's dick turns out to be straight, but I know Im gonna be disappointed.

    Posted by: Jerry | Mar 13, 2011 3:40:22 PM

  12. Didn't we have some tool commenter here that said it was no big deal and he was doing it for attention and deals?

    So erm why was the blog on the Swedish website closed because of all the homophobic comments?

    Hmm, maybe it was closed because they we all saying how cute he was and how they wanted him to be on their magazines???

    Like I said before, this guy is braver then any other out player including Thomas because football is the most homophobic, aggressive and narrow minded sport out there.

    It's why the Englis players in the league refuse to do the anti-gay campaign.

    I don't condone it, I understand it BUT I still think that change only happens when you make a stand. Become a fall out guy.

    I've been on terraces and as a black guy herering people unanimously in a group of more then 1000 on one section make monkey noises when a black player took the ball is horrible. Urgh.

    Just look at what Sol Campbell out up with. It was horrible. Really horrible. Whenever he got given the ball.....the chants would start and reverberate around the stadium.

    Just google guys before one makes an opinion on the state of football/soccer.

    Posted by: Rowan | Mar 13, 2011 3:41:05 PM

  13. If someone groped me in an airport bathroom I suspect I'd respond as thought I'd been assaulted, reacting the same way I have to attempted muggings or gay bashings. Come to think of it, the last time a drunk tried to grab me in a gay bar bathroom I elbowed him in the stomach.

    I'm hardly prone to physical violence - these are the only times I can recall being physically violent with anyone since I was 14 or 15 - but I'm fine with people committing sexual assault getting punched in the face, regardless of their orientation.

    Posted by: Bryan | Mar 13, 2011 3:51:59 PM

  14. Count me as one of the don't-grope-me-in-an-airport-restroom-or-I'll-hurt-you crowd. If I want to be touched by a Republican Congressman I'll... I'll... hmmmm, that's never been something I've wanted.

    Posted by: Anastasia Beaverhausen | Mar 13, 2011 5:39:29 PM

  15. I feel the need to point out that yes, Daddy Hysén is a sexy man, but that photo up above is several years old. He's a little more hot "Grand Daddy" now than hot "Daddy"...

    And, defending yourself against an unwanted sexual assault does not make you a homophobe. Many gay men have had to get a little assertive against OTHER gay men for coming on too strong...that doesn't make them self-hating.

    Posted by: Michael Strangeways | Mar 13, 2011 6:56:53 PM

  16. damn, the dad is BANGING.

    Posted by: ajw18 | Mar 13, 2011 9:40:53 PM

  17. Second European footballer to come out as gay. Justin Fashanu came out in 1990. He commited suicide in 1998.

    Posted by: Ryan | Mar 13, 2011 11:28:09 PM

  18. Correction: Justin Fashanu was the first European footballer to come out. And he played in the EPL, of all leagues. Hysén is the second (although the 15-20 year span between their two careers could well lead us to think that he is the first).

    Posted by: Pierre | Mar 14, 2011 12:16:15 AM

  19. Steve Pep, please work on usage and diction. You mean to say that Anton is a Swede, not Sweden, and your use of surprisingly to describe the father's delivery of the opening remarks at Stockholm Pride 2007 is similarly off. Weekend posts on Towleroad would make a good homework set for copy editing training! It is a shame.

    Posted by: Tom | Mar 14, 2011 4:19:41 AM

  20. dilf

    Posted by: jake | Mar 15, 2011 7:56:19 PM

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