Skip to main content

Home News News World

Pro footballer Jakub Jankto comes out as gay: ‘Freedom without fear’

"I no longer want to hide"

By Jamie Tabberer

Jakub Jankto (Image: Wiki)

Jakub Jankto, a professional footballer from the Czech Republic, has come out as gay in an emotional video.

In the footage shared online today, the 27-year-old tells fans: “I no longer want to hide.”

Jankto plays as a midfielder for Czech First League club Sparta Prague. He is currently on loan from La Liga club Getafe, and the Czech Republic national team. He is now the highest-profile male footballer to ever come out as gay.

“I want to live my life in freedom without fear – Jakub Jankto

In his video, which was posted to Twitter today [Monday 13 February 2023] Jankto said: “Hi, I’m Jakub Jankto.

“Like everybody else, I have my strengths, I have my weaknesses; I have a family, I have my friends.

“I have a job, which I have been doing it as best as I can, for years, with seriousness, professionalism and passion. Like everybody else, I also want to live my life in freedom without fears, without prejudice, without violence, but with love.

“I am homosexual, and I no longer want to hide myself.”

In a statement, a rep for Sparta Prague said: “Jakub spoke openly about his sexual orientation with the club some time ago. Everything else concerns his personal life.

“No further comments. No more questions. You have our support. Live your life, Jakub. Nothing else matters.”

A spokesperson for Getafe added: “Our maximum respect and unconditional support to our footballer Jakub Jankto.”

A FIFA rep furthermore added: “We’re all with you, Jakub. Football is for everyone.”

Jankto follows in the footsteps of Australian footballer Josh Cavallo and Jake Daniels of Blackpool FC in coming out publicly as gay in recent years. The first professional footballer to do so was the late Justin Fashanu in 1990.

In 1981, Fashanu become one of the first footballers to be paid a £1 million transfer fee, after switching from Norwich City to Nottingham Forest.