To answer this Gay player question, we should first ask ourselves if it is at all possible that there aren’t any gay players in the Premier League. Theoretically, it is. But only theoretically.
Here is why;
The Premier league has 20 teams. Each one needs a minimum team of 25 players. That makes for 500 players in the Premier League.
Gays arguably make up about 7% of the global male population. Let us further make the following assumptions;
- that being gay has no influence on a man’s chances of being blessed with exceptional football skills (fitness, stamina, ball control, passing ability, accuracy-on-target, tactical insight, team playing etc.);
- that gay people, like other people, are ambitious about building the best possible career out of things they happen to be exceptionally good at (in this case, playing football). And yes, this ambitiousness may involve paying the price of hiding their sexual orientation.
- that those responsible for player selection are indifferent to a player’s (rumored) sexual orientation.
In other words, being gay is assumed to have no influence on a man’s chances of being Premier League material.
Under these assumptions, we can on-the-back-of-an-envelope (see PS below) calculate the probability that no players in the Premier League are gay. It goes like this:
- If out of the tens of thousands of men worldwide who are Premier League material you randomly select 1 player, the probability that he is straight is p1=(100%−7%)=93%p1=(100%−7%)=93%
- If you select 2 players, the probability that they are both straight is p2=(93%×93%)=(93%)2=86.49%p2=(93%×93%)=(93%)2=86.49%
- If you select 3 players, the probability that they are all straight is p3=(93%×93%×93%)=(93%)3=80.44%p3=(93%×93%×93%)=(93%)3=80.44%
You can see where this is headed …
- If you select 500 players, the probability that they are all straight is p500=(93%)500=1.74%×10−18=0.00000000000000000174%p500=(93%)500=1.74%×10−18=0.00000000000000000174%
So yes, there exists a probability that no Premier League player is gay, but the chances of you right now buying a lottery ticket and then winning EuroMillions are literally hundreds of millions of times higher!
So the reason why no player in the Premier League is openly gay is – with a mind-boggling degree of certainty – not that there are no gay Premier League players. Hence, by elimination, the reason must be a reluctance (out of shame, fear etc.) of coming out as gay. That is of course if assumption #3 is true.
If assumption #3 were to be false, a “gay free” Premier League would suddenly become very probable. But then UK professional football (and by extension, professional football worldwide) would have to admit to an even larger disgrace than the coming-out reluctance of gay players.