New book on the life of gay footballer Justin Fashanu to be released in the UK

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A British journalist and writer based in Canada has written a book about the life of the late gay footballer Justin Fashanu.

Nick Baker’s “Forbidden Forward: The Justin Fashanu Story” will hit UK book shelves in the next few days.

Britain’s only footballer to come out and continue playing killed himself in 1998, having suffered years of homophobic abuse both on and off the pitch.

Mr Baker told “As you know, the battle against homophobia in football is still an ongoing fight today therefore Justin Fashanu’s story is still very relevant. I ended the book with a chapter called ‘Legacy of a Reluctant Hero’ which looks at how Fashanu continues to inspire gay sports people and others across the world today and what’s being done to combat homophobia in football right now.”

“The reason why I wrote the book is because as a teenager I grew up in Nottingham and watched Justin Fashanu play for Nottingham Forest and Notts County in the early eighties. Curious about why the footballer’s life eventually fell apart so tragically, I decided to investigate his life. That curiosity led to this book.”

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, a friend of Fashanu, has contributed to the book.

The foreword has been penned by former Leeds United player Robbie Rogers, who came out as gay in February and announced his retirement.

Rogers has since resumed his professional playing career in the US with LA Galaxy.