Football / Fan's View

‘Homophobia displayed at Ashton Gate’

By Dave Skinner , Friday Nov 25, 2016

Hello again, my dear Blog reader. I have been mulling over what tone to take in this week’s offering for some time, given you unfortunate folk have had no instalments over the last couple of weeks due to some unforeseen circumstances and the international break. It feels like much has changed in the world in the last few weeks but I am certain this is not the appropriate space to reflect on that.
So, football it is. Last weekend saw us reacquaint ourselves with our old knack of conceding late, and often losing, goals. It would appear from match reports that I have read that City dominated Gary Rowett’s Birmingham side and by all accounts the ‘Blues’ were fortuitous to make it away with all three points.
The Birmingham game, and this weekends’ against Reading, are games that City will most likely have to take points from if they are to be considered genuine play-off contenders. You would not say the same for our last game before the international break that saw us outclassed by a Brighton side that I strongly tip to join Newcastle in automatic promotion.
There was one very upsetting aspect of the Brighton game though that I feel compelled to share with you. I have been doing this blog since the beginning of last season and on the whole I have enjoyed rambling on about the comings and goings and various nonsense related to the football team that I truly adore. I would say a low point however was relaying the incidents of homophobic chanting that I heard in last seasons home fixture to Chris Houghton’s side.
It is with a heavy heart that I have to sadly once again confirm that a small but reasonably vocal minority deemed it acceptable to use homophobic chanting to try and antagonise/abuse the Brighton supporters. I have to commend those in the crowd, a couple of which are close friends of mine, who challenged the idiots who were involved in said abuse.
Homophobic chanting was common place in football grounds when I started going to games regularly in the early 90s. It is a welcome change that incidents of homophobia are now seen, by me at least, only from time to time but always at least once a season in this fixture against Brighton.
Sport in general however, and football in particular, is still a long way behind the rest of society in recognising and accepting LGBT rights. It is a sad truth that there must be many gay footballers playing in our professional game that don’t feel they are able to come out and be openly gay and given the backward views displayed by some at Ashton Gate recently its perfectly understandable to see why.
As I said last year. Homophobia should be seen in the same way as racism and should dealt with equally as severely. I myself would have liked to have seen people ejected from the ground for participating in the offensive chanting although I appreciate the logistics of this are somewhat complicated.
Right, back to footballing matters. I am very excited to be heading up the M4 this weekend for my first away league trip of the campaign. Last year saw us succumb to that previously mentioned horror of a late winner for the opposing side.
Reading look a tough outfit this season and under the stewardship of former Man United start Jaap Stam you’d expect them to show a strong physical side, something we have slightly struggled against thus far this season. Fingers crossed though the 3000 plus City fans making the trip can propel our side to a much needed victory.  
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