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Gay ref fights for job in Turkey
June 30th, 2009 7:01AM



[REF WATCH] Veteran referee Halil Ibrahim Dincdag has sued the Turkish soccer federation after it did not renew his license because he is gay. "They thought I was an ant that they could crush, they thought I would run away and hide in a corner," Halil Ibrahim Dincdag said. "But they have destroyed my life and I will fight them to the end."

More than 30,000 people have signed a petition launched by Turkey's most influential newspaper backing Dincdag's campaign. The federation then claimed that it sacked Dincdag because of poor performances, prompting him to display a decade's worth of match reports that showed he ranked among the best local referees.

"The crowds shout 'faggot' at referees whose decisions they don't like," said Dincdag, 33, when he came out on a popular Turkish TV sports show. "Well, here I am."

Three-quarters of the 80 referees in the city of Trabzon where Dincdag referees have called him in support.

Turkey's most popular soccer commentator and former referee Erman Toroglu said he didn't think Dincdag should be reappointed because, "I reckon [homosexual referees] would have a tendency to give more penalties to good-looking, tough players."

Dincdag responded with, "Does Toroglu assault every pretty girl he passes in the street?"


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