Fans have come to the defence of former boxing champ Evander Holyfield after he was cautioned for making a homophochic remark on Celebrity Big Brother.

The 51-year-old star and devout Christian was cautioned by show bosses after he claimed "gay ain't normal" during a conversation with The Apprentice runner-up Luisa Zissman about gay sports stars.

When Zissman insisted that more people should be open about their sexuality, Mike Tyson's former rival replied: "But that ain't normal.

"The Bible lets you know there's wrong, there's right," he said.

He went on to disagree with Zissman's theory that some people were born gay and instead likened homosexuality to a handicap that could be fixed.

"It don't make no difference. If you're born and your leg were turned this way, what do you do? You go to a doctor and get it fixed back right," he said.

He was reprimanded in the Diary Room for using offensive language.

"While Big Brother understands these are the views you hold, they aren't the views that are held by a large section of society, and expressing these views will be extremely offensive to many people," he was told.

He replied: "Yes I understand why. I thought I was just, I forgot about the thing. I was just telling her my opinion but it's not like I was going to mention [it] to anybody else. It was just our conversation."

The American fighter did not apologise for the comments which have led to calls for him to be thrown out of the house.

Stars including singer Boy George expressed their outrage online:

But one fan said: "Evander is correct, if insensitive. Homosexuality is a minority sexual orientation. To say so is not homophobic, it is true. It appears Big Brother is perilously close to its Orwellian namesake."

Another wrote: "Welcome to England: Free speech is not permitted."

A third added: "There is something wrong if someone is not allowed an opinion. His argument made some logical sense it may be against some opinions but he was not being openly or directly offensive."