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Soccer and homosexuality: The conflicts that lie within the affective game of the coach-adolescent athlete relationship

Motriz: Revista de Educacao Fisica. 2014;20(4):346-358 DOI 10.1590/S1980-65742014000400001


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Journal Title: Motriz: Revista de Educacao Fisica

ISSN: 1980-6574 (Online)

Publisher: Universidade Estadual Paulista

LCC Subject Category: Geography. Anthropology. Recreation: Recreation. Leisure: Sports | Medicine: Internal medicine: Special situations and conditions: Sports medicine

Country of publisher: Brazil

Language of fulltext: English

Full-text formats available: PDF, HTML, XML



Altair Moioli

Afonso Antônio Machado

Marcelo Callegari Zanetti

Debra Frances Campbell

António Rui Gomes


Double blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 24 weeks


Abstract | Full Text

Discussions regarding homosexuality within a sports context are mediated by emotional nuances, especially in the world of soccer, where practitioners are required to have attributes such as strength, masculinity and aggressiveness. As a consequence, this work aimed to analyze the symbolic representation of homosexual relationships between adolescent soccer players and their coaches; and, furthermore, to understand the intention behind homoerotic relationships that are established between members of the management team and its players. In this study, researchers used the life history methodology, with participation from three adolescent athletes, ages 14, 15 and 16, and three former athletes, ages 26, 28 and 45, who we called speakers. Based on the collection and analysis of research participants' testimonies, homosexual relations were found to have occurred between athletes and coaches, or between athletes and other members of the management team, as a part of a "social contract" that is exclusively linked to their professional objectives. These relationships appear to be purely objective; authentic affective links are absent, due apparently to the transient nature of the athletes in these groups. Too, this context is usually marked by the athlete's physical and emotional vulnerability, and the agreements he makes within this context are accompanied with moral dilemmas, because such adolescents idealize the coach as a paternal archetype.