Counter Culture / June 10, 2022

Bohemian FC becomes first professional football club in history to participate in Pride

Counter Culture / June 10, 2022

Bohemian FC becomes first professional football club in history to participate in Pride

Words: Eva O’Beirne

A number of well-known Irish personalities and celebrities have been rumoured to be walking with the club for the Pride parade.

Dublin-based Bohemian FC is to become the first professional football team from the League of Ireland to march in Dublin Pride. This landmark moment comes as the club is aiming to become more inclusive and welcoming primarily for queer male footballers, as many still keep their sexualities hidden.

To celebrate Pride month, the club unveiled a new rainbow mural in Phibsborough and has also established a close relationship with LGBTQ+ charity ShoutOut, who are delivering workshops to all coaches in the clubs, and eventually all teams, to educate on queer issues and improve inclusivity.

As to who will be taking part in the march with the club, rumours are rife that Johnny Logan himself will appear, with supporters group GayBohs uploading a video yesterday hinting so. Current and ex-Bohs players have been confirmed to appear in the march, including their women’s senior team.

GayBohs, Ireland’s first and only LGBTQ+ football supporters group spoke to District about the importance of the club committing to supporting the community on such a public level.

“We started with a flag and the fact that we were so nervous hanging that flag the first night confirmed that there was indeed a huge issue with LGBTQ inclusion in sort, and especially in football. While we are primarily a supporters group we have become somewhat reluctantly become accidental activists I suppose,” a representative said.

“As LGBTQ+ supporters we are well aware of how hostile the terraces and stands of football are to minorities. We grow up hearing racist, misogynistic and homophobic abuse being hurled around casually and thinking we just had to accept it. But there comes a point when you just have to stand up to it. So the GayBohs flag was our way of doing that.”

“The GayBohs flag and group was the starting point in a conversation about making the club more inclusive for LGBTQ+ minorities. This began a couple of years ago when we suggested the club fly the Pride flag, which they were very happy to do. Since then, we have worked with the club on a host of ideas to make Bohs a more inclusive club and to make Dalymount Park a more inclusive space for all Bohs fans. This will culminate with the Bohs becoming the first professional team to march in Pride,” they continued.

“All of the actions the club are taking are great and especially important in light of the horrific murders of Michael Snee and Aidan Moffat, and the rise in violence against the LGBTQ+ community in recent times. It’s a sad indictment of the times we live in so these steps by the club are appreciated and from our point of view still hugely important and needed as a show of solidarity. For us it is also great that the club isn’t just crowbarring in some pride stuff for June just for marketing purposes, it’s being done for the right reasons, and what’s being done goes beyond the pride timescale, to become part of the ethos of the club.”

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