SAN DIEGO, CA – The San Diego Loyal SC was winning a soccer game against the opposing team the Phoenix Rising on Wednesday, September 30th. Then the team chose to forfeit in protest an alleged homophobic slur against an openly gay player. Taking a stand is never easy. But there is a price to pay for not standing up for who and what you are. Choosing to forfeit a soccer game is a big deal but not in comparison to sacrificing your freedom of choice to live your life on your terms and fearlessly.
Alleged Homophobic Slur
The San Diego Loyal SC reportedly said a member of Phoenix Rising “used a homophobic slur directed at Collin Martin.”
“In response, we have decided to walk off the pitch in protest,” the team wrote on Twitter. Collin Martin is an openly gay man and who came out in 2018. At the time, Martin said he was the only out gay man in any major professional sport in the U.S.
San Diego was winning the match 3-1 when it chose to forfeit. This may have also cost the team its playoff hopes, according to NBC Sports.
Investigation of Claim
Phoenix Rising is “investigating the claim of a homophobic slur. The homophobic slur used by one its players has vehemently denied these allegations. Phoenix Rising stands with the USL. They will reject and punish any homophobic behavior.”
The United Soccer League also said it is looking into the alleged bigotry.
“Foul and abusive language of any type has absolutely no place in our society and will not be tolerated in USL matches,” the league wrote in a statement late Wednesday. “An investigation is currently underway to determine the facts surrounding the incident and more information will be provided as soon as it is available.”
In Another Game, an Alleged Racist Comment was Made
The San Diego Loyal SC’s action came a week after it walked off the field in another game. This time, it was over an alleged racist comment directed at a Black player by a member of the Los Angeles Galaxy. After the September 23th incident, the Galaxy player was suspended. The suspension is for six games by the USL Championship and released from the Los Angeles team, NBC Sports released.