Becker with Ballack
Well, there’s an awkward uproar in Germany, thanks to Michael Ballack’s agent, Michael Becker, who gave a recent interview to the popular news magazine, Der Spiegel, in which he thought he’d casually “out” some members of the German side.
Statistics – and logic – will tell you that there are certainly a fair few gay footballers playing all over the world, and as decent forward thinkers who have no problem with men marrying other men, or bikini’d women snogging one another in parks, The Spoiler is a very gay-friendly zone. All are welcome.
Unfortunately, even in such modern times, it seems that the rest of the world which surrounds football hasn’t quite caught up, meaning that it still has some way to go before embracing our homosexual brothers and sisters.
Anyway, here’s the extract from the controversial piece in Der Spiegel, which (as reported in The Guardian) Joachim Low “would not stoop so low” as to react to:
He (Becker) talked a lot about people who were envious of his client, because they were supposedly mediocre, ugly, untalented, bureaucratic, provincial, unmanly or gay. He told me some unbelievable stories, which I wrote down on my pad of paper. Becker didn’t seem to mind, perhaps because he assumed that they would never make it into print anyway, or that they were already common knowledge. A few days later, on the sidelines of a farewell match for footballer Bernd Schneider at Bayer Leverkusen, Becker told a group of agents and journalists in the Bayer clubhouse that there was a former player on the national team who was about to go public with the names of “the gay combo.” I expected my fellow journalists to be all ears, but they seemed relatively blasé about Becker’s remark. It seemed that every sports journalist was already familiar with the alleged homosexual conspiracy swirling around German coach Joachim Löw’s team. The rumors accompanied the team to South Africa. They are apparently part of the package.
After lunch, Becker showed me his office, his house and his garden, where he has been trying for some time, albeit unsuccessfully, to build a frog pond. He told me, beaming, how Elton John had sung the German national anthem at Ballack’s wedding. When I asked him whether he thought that a player whose nomination to the team had come as something of a surprise was gay, Becker said: “He’s half-gay.” When he said that, I realized that all of this was somehow synonymous with something Becker could no longer understand. It was something that was light, non-ideological, dance-like, beautiful, joyful, and easily confusing for someone whose life had revolved around pecking orders and hierarchies until then.
Interestingly, the German word for ”half gay” is Uranodioning – which means to have passionate feelings for women, but tender feelings for men.
So there you go.