A 2012 homophobic interview from Croatia and Barcelona Football FC Ivan Rakitić has been making the rounds on twitter again.
In the interview Rakitić responds to a question about Croatian Football Federation president Vlatko Markovic claiming the sport was only for “healthy people” and not for gay men.
“I respect homosexuals, but I do not want those people in the locker room,” Rakitić said.
“I would not leave a team for that, because I respect a homosexual equal to a black, a fat or a dwarf, but if possible I prefer not to have gays in my life.”
Journalist Chris Williams called out the interview as “possibly the worst quote attributed to a footballer in a very very long time.”
Rakitić maintains his words were a misunderstanding and that“I’m an open personand I have no problems with gay players.”
“I’m open to sharing a dressing room with anyone who is a good person and a good player, and sexual orientation is not important to me.”