Gay Soccer Player Gets Standing Ovation in His First Game Since Coming Out

Collin Martin came out just hours before his team's Pride Night, but was benched.

Minnesota United soccer player Collin Martin came out as gay on Friday, just hours before the team’s Pride night. However, he did not get to play that night, despite being on the field regularly for months.

The decision to bench the recently out Martin caused speculation, despite the club’s public support.

Not only did Martin say he had an extra desire to play on Pride Night, he also suggested manager Adrian Heath might have been worried he would be too distracted to play well after having just come out.

But on Wednesday night, July 4, he made his first appearance on the field as an openly gay player, and the audience rose to their feet to cheer him on, many waving rainbow Minnesota United scarves.

After the game, where Martin’s team came out victorious over Toronto with a score of 4-3, he was approached by the players and coaches and congratulated with high-fives and hugs.

Martin is now the second Major League Soccer player to come out as gay, following Robbie Rogers, who came out in 2013.

Journalist based in Charlotte, North Carolina, whose work has appeared in The Charlotte Observer, Creative Loafing, and more.