Luke Shaw has taken to Twitter to deny rumours that he is one of two Premier League players reportedly set to come out as gay. The Mirror revealed on 24 October that one England international and another current top-flight player have already told family and friends and were currently receiving support from their respective clubs and the Football Association before potentially going public before the start of the 2016/17 season.
The two footballers in question were not named in the initial report, but that has not stopped a stream of baseless speculation on social media in which people have discussed their potential identities. The late Justin Fashanu was the first player to come out as gay back in 1990. Former Leeds winger Robbie Rogers did the same two years ago. Ex-German international Thomas Hitzlsperger revealed his homosexuality during an interview with Die Zeit in January 2014.
Manchester United fan channel The United Stand responded to rumours over Shaw by posting: "The idiocy of these Luke Shaw rumours & he's not even gay! And so what if he is? He's a United player and we support him #MUFC."
That drew a response from the 20-year-old left-back, who later confirmed: "It's not me, so everyone can shut up now."
Shaw, formerly the most expensive teenager in world football, has made 28 appearances in all competitions since joining Manchester United from Southampton in a deal worth £27m ($41.3m) back in June 2014. His impressive form at the start of the current season was sadly curtailed when he suffered a horrific double leg break following a challenge from Hector Moreno during the club's 2-1 Champions League defeat to PSV Eindhoven in September.