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John Fashanu confesses: I paid my gay brother N24million to keep quiet
John Fashanu: Regrets his reaction to alleged gay brother

John Fashanu confesses: I paid my gay brother N24million to keep quiet

 

Football star John Fashanu has confessed that he paid his gay brother, Justin  £75,000 (About N24million) in a failed attempt to stop him  from publicly declaring his status and become the first ever black footballer to do so.

Fashanu’s older brother Justin revealed his sexuality in a newspaper interview in 1990. A week later, John gave The Voice an exclusive interview under the headline “my gay brother is an outcast”. Former Wimbledon player John, now 53, told the Mirror on Friday that he regretted his action.

The former Wimbledon striker made the shock admission a week after it emerged two top footballers – including an England star – plan to come out .

Justin Fashanu with his brother John-Fashanu holding his daughter

Justin Fashanu with his brother John-Fashanu holding his daughter

Justin Fashanu in his playing days

Justin Fashanu in his playing days

Justin and John as young boys

Justin and John as young boys

In his first in-depth interview about brother Justin since his tragic suicide in 1998, he said: “I begged him, I threatened him, I did everything I could possibly do to try and stop him coming out.

“I gave him the money because I didn’t want the embarrassment for me or my family. Had he come out now, it would be a different ball game.

“There wouldn’t be an issue, but there was then. Things are different now. Now he’d be hailed a hero.”

Justin shot to fame as a teenager with a stunning goal for Norwich in 1980 against a Liverpool team that included Alan Hansen and Kenny Dalglish.

Brian Clough lavished a £1million transfer fee – a record for a black player – on the England under-21 international to take him to Nottingham Forest. But he did not hit the heights expected.

In a newspaper interview in 1990, he claimed to have had an affair with a married Tory MP he met in a gay bar.

He added the discovery his brother was gay had been “like Hiroshima or Nagasaki on our lives”.

Justin killed himself in 1998 after allegations he had sexually assaulted a teenager in the States, which he denied.

“It knocked us dead,” John said

But he now admits he had been wrong to ostracise the Leyton Orient player over the revelation.

John now regrets his action and felt he should have reacted differently to the situation of his brother “I was wrong,” he said. “It was ignorance on my behalf.

You’ve got to remember the public’s perception of homosexuality at that time was that it was an abomination. It was taboo.”

In his first in-depth interview about brother Justin since his tragic suicide in 1998, he said: “I begged him, I threatened him, I did everything I could possibly do to try and stop him coming out.

“I gave him the money because I didn’t want the embarrassment for me or my family. Had he come out now, it would be a different ball game.

“There wouldn’t be an issue, but there was then. Things are different now. Now he’d be hailed a hero.”

Justin shot to fame as a teenager with a stunning goal for Norwich in 1980 against a Liverpool team that included Alan Hansen and Kenny Dalglish.

Brian Clough lavished a £1million transfer fee – a record for a black player – on the England under-21 international to take him to Nottingham Forest. But he did not hit the heights expected.

In a newspaper interview in 1990, he claimed to have had an affair with a married Tory MP he met in a gay bar.

John, 53, said: “I’ll never forget when Justin first told me. He called me in the evening time and said to me: ‘I’m gay’.

“Then he said to me: ‘I’m planning to go to a newspaper’. I said to him: ‘Oh heavens forbid… oh my God. We don’t need that. You’re mad’.

“He promised when I gave him the money he would not go out and say that. Two days later… bang… headlines in a newspaper. I looked like a sucker.

“For me and my family it was like Hiroshima or Nagasaki on our lives. It knocked us dead, it was a total shock.

“People might not like it, but I was trying to protect my family.

“You’ve got to remember the public’s perception of homosexuality at that time was that it was an abomination . It was taboo. Street boys were beating up gays in nightclubs.

“I give him credit for having the courage to come out and say it. But it caused a lot of confusion and animosity towards him, me, and my family.

“During matches, 30, 40, sometimes 45,000 supporters sang at me: ‘You’re big… you’re black… your a*** is up for grabs… Fashanu… Fashanu’.

“As a result of him saying what he said, my mother died because of the stress. She actually died a year later on the day of his birthday.

“She was already old, very fragile and suffering cancer.

“Then to be told her second eldest son was a homosexual was too much.”He claimed the “stress” of having a gay son had resulted in his mother’s death.

“I gave him the money because I didn’t want the embarrassment for me or my family,” he told the newspaper.“Had he come out now, it would be a different ball game.”

Committed Christian John, who was born in Kensington and now lives in Nigeria, still does not believe his brother was actually gay, the paper stated.

 

 

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