Cassano stirs gay controversy

12 June 2012 09:49

Italy striker Antonio Cassano caused controversy at Euro 2012 by saying he hopes there are no homosexuals in the national team squad.

Reports in Italy had claimed there were two homosexual players in Cesare Prandelli's 23-man Euro 2012 group, and Cassano responded to questions at a press conference on Tusday.

"The (national) coach had warned me that you would ask me this question," Cassano said. "If I say what I thinkI hope there are none. But if there are queers here, that's their business."

Cassano also spoke at the press conference of his surprise at even being at the European Championship after his unexpected health scare last year. He returned to action in April for AC Milan following a six-month spell on the sidelines after undergoing minor heart surgery.

"I honestly didn't think I would play at the European Championship," Cassano said.

"I was scared. When you arrive to a certain point where it is a case of live or die, everything else becomes secondary.

"I saw the future as grey, very grey, but fortunately I am here. I have been blessed, and even if I am not a believer I do feel I have been blessed."

Source: PA