ESPN body issue features same-sex couple for the first time

A same-sex couple have been featured on the cover of ESPN’s body issue for the first time.

The issue, which rivals Sport’s Illustrated’s swimwear issue, documents the nude bodies of top celebrities and athletes.

And for the first time in history, the Storm’s Sue Bird and the Reign’s Megan Rapinoe have appeared as the first openly queer couple in the issue.

For those not familiar with the US sporting world, Rapinoe is a point guard for Seattle Storm, while Bird is a forward for Seattle Reign FC and is a 2015 Fifa World Cup champion.

“I think neither of us really wants to just do things and be like, “We’re the gay couple.” But to have this really unique vehicle to actually do that, to celebrate who we are in our sport, but also the fact that we’ll be the first gay couple, is pretty special,” the pair told ESPN.

“It’s pretty amazing to think about, especially in the times we’re in. Just think of how far we’ve come, but also the current climate and defiance in the face of that. Not only are we female athletes, but we’re dating as well. It’s kind of badass.”

“Yeah, I think it’ll probably be even more bad-ass later,” added Bird.

“A year, five years, 10 years, 20 years, to look back and be like, oh, they were the first openly gay couple to be on the cover, to be in the issue.”

“It’s time,” read the tweet.

“ESPN the Magazine’s BODY10 Issue hits newsstands June 29, but you can view the gallery right now.”

Queer Twitter has celebrated the move, with one person describing it as “a pretty cool statement for America and beyond.”