Former Chelsea star Alex in homophobic row
Published 08/01/2014 | 15:19
On the same day former Germany international Thomas Hitzlsperger came out, PSG defender Alex has become embroiled in a row after claiming that "God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Yves".
Thomas Hitzlsperger has expressed his gratitude for the kind messages of support he has received after announcing he is gay.
Hitzlsperger, who retired in September, took to Twitter to thank "everyone" while sports stars past and present also welcomed the news.
"Hello everyone! All these messages about my news, I am overwhelmed from this and I can't say thank you enough times!," Hitzlsperger wrote on his twitter account.
The only sour note on an otherwise landmark day for football with Hitzlsperger becoming the most high-profile player to come out was anti-gay comments attributed to former Chelsea defender Alex.
A supportive Joey Barton took to Twitter to voice his opinion on the news in typically uncompromising fashion.
The QPR midfielder tweeted: "Thomas Hitzlsperger has shown a lot of courage today. Sad times when people have to wait till they retire from their chosen profession before they feel other people will judge them solely on who the human being is. Shame on all of us as a society."
However, he also added two further tweets which read: "But it is understandable when brainwashed, religious zealots still believe in a fictional book written over 2000 yrs ago.
"To be religious extremist, you must first be extremely dumb in my opinion.
"Alex from PSG simply confirms my theory with his comments today."
Alex, who now plays for PSG is said to have told French channel Canal+, in a programme to be aired tonight on religion in football: "God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Yves".
Another Brazilian defender who plays for Marcos Ceara also says on the 'Jesus Football Club' show: "I am against divorce and abortion. I’m not really for homosexuality".
Aside from Alex and Ceara's comments a host of sports stars were quick to congratulate the former Aston Villa midfielder for his 'brave' decision in coming out.
While there has been widespread support for Hitzlsperger, the comments made by Alex as well as Michael Johnson's resignation from the Football Association inclusion advisory board are indicative that not everyone is so accepting.
Johnson withdrew from his FA role on Tuesday after footage emerged showing the former player describing homosexuality as "detestable".
Johnson, 40, made the comments in 2012 while appearing on a BBC1 series called 'The Big Questions', during which he opted not to back the FA anti-homophobia campaign.
His remarks were brought back into focus after his appointment to the FA body, although Johnson said last week that his views had changed.
Former Jamaica international Johnson, who played for Notts County, Derby and Birmingham, said he would continue to back anti-discrimination ventures in football.