LGBT+ History Month: Scottish players Rachel Corsie and Claire Emslie say there’s never been a better time to go out | Soccer News

For LGBT+ History Month, Scottish players Rachel Corsie and Claire Emslie sat down for a conversation about identity, their experiences in football, being an ally for the LGBT+ community and why there is never had a better time to go out.

Corsie, who is lesbian and in a relationship, spoke with Emslie, whose sister and close friends are part of the LGBT+ community.

The pair played together for Scotland and had stints abroad but are now in the WSL with Corsie signing for Aston Villa earlier this year, while Emslie has been at Everton since 2020.

Corse said Sky Sports News“When you first find out who you are and first try to understand those feelings, that’s also a difficult path in itself.

Scotland’s Rachel Corsie (left) celebrates scoring against Hungary in the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 qualifying match at Hampden Park

“I think everyone’s journey is different. I think there’s a lot of positives in our environment – the world of women’s football – there are a lot of examples where people can hopefully build on each other. identify with others who feel the same as them and this allows people to feel safe and comfortable.

“I also think there are some detrimental cases and we’ve probably seen from a relatively young age people, whether it’s even in the environment or outside of the environment, talking about your sexuality from an early age. .

Scotland's Claire Emslie during the Women's International Friendly at St Mirren Park, Paisley.
Claire Emslie plays as a striker for Scotland and Everton

“You were probably asked from a very young age what your preference was, and would you like to try it, would you go there and have you been there, you’re a close friend of someone and it becomes a rumor.”

Emslie admits she was asked about her sexuality as a youngster “all the time”.

The Scotland and Everton striker said: “I think as a girl playing football it’s changed a lot, there are a lot more girls playing football and it’s also seen as a girls sport.

Everton's Claire Emslie (centre) in action during the FA Women's Super League match at Walton Hall Park, Liverpool.  Picture date: Saturday September 25, 2021
Emslie (centre) during the WSL game against Birmingham in September 2021

“But growing up, you wear tracksuits, you always play with the boys and you don’t go out and dress in your heels.

“Although I’ve been straight all my life, people would certainly have asked questions. My sister is so traditionally a girl, a dancer, I was a footballer wearing trackies – she grew up and she’s gay, and I ‘ve ended up being You would definitely assume it would be me basing myself on stereotypes.”

Emslie earned a degree in exercise physiology in the United States. She signed for Orlando Pride and at the World Cup scored Scotland’s first goal in the tournament. She also had a loan spell in Australia where she won the league with Melbourne City.

Corsie wore the Pride flag on his captain’s armband during a World Cup qualifier against Hungary in September last year. This was in response to discrimination against the LGBT+ community by new laws that had been passed in Hungary.

She was Villa’s third signing of the January transfer window and returned to the UK after three and a half years in the NWSL with Kansas City Current. Villa are the ninth different club in her 16-year playing career.

New signing Rachel Corsie of Aston Villa poses for a photo at Bodymoor Heath training ground on January 27, 2022 in Birmingham, England
New signing from Aston Villa Corsie has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with Kansas City Current in the NWSL

She is in a same-sex relationship and admits she still regularly hears stereotypes in women’s football.

“Stereotypes are dangerous in general, any time you generalize terms it can be dangerous,” said Corsie, who led Scotland to their first Women’s World Cup in 2019.

“You hear comments all the time: ‘All female footballers are gay’ or ‘Why so many gay people?’ It’s a conversation that shouldn’t exist anymore because it’s wrong for one thing but it can be harmful.

“It’s insensitive to the fact that everyone goes through a different process, whether it’s sexuality or any type of relationship, it’s something sensitive and personal for everyone and there’s probably been a lot of instances where there’s been a lack of respect around that in general.”

“It’s positive in women’s football, people are so open”

Both players agree there has never been a better time for people to be open about who they are, especially in women’s football.

Scotland's Corsie (middle, back row) and Emslie (bottom right) before the World Cup qualifier against Hungary
Scotland’s Corsie (middle, back) and Emslie (bottom right) ahead of the World Cup qualifier against Hungary

“I think it’s positive in women’s football that people are so open,” said Emslie, who played 41 times for Scotland and scored nine goals.

“In my experience, my friends that I grew up with, some of them when they came out, they didn’t come out initially and they had to hide it.

“I’ve been their friend for years and never knew it, and then they finally admitted it. Being their friend, the most hurtful thing was the fact that they didn’t feel comfortable being able to talk about it. When I found out, I was the one hurt that they thought it wasn’t ok.

“Now that it’s LGBT+ history month and it’s becoming more conscious and everyone’s accepting it a bit more, I’d like to think it’s a better age and a better generation now to accept everyone,” says Emslie.

“It definitely does, we’re starting to see it,” says Corsie, a trained accountant and avid Aberdeen fan.

Corsie warms up ahead of the FIFA Women's World Cup 2023 Qualifier match at Hampden Park, Glasgow.  Picture date: Friday, November 26
Corsie, 32, captains Scotland and has 130 international caps and 18 goals

“The more we have these conversations, ultimately the more people learn, we’re all still learning. The biggest thing people can do is try to educate themselves and the people around them and to keep those conversations front and center and able to happen so that everyone is open to it and feels like they have a space.”

Sky Sports

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