Justin Fashanu was a professional English footballer who played for a number of clubs between 1978 and 1997. He played for major clubs such as Norwich City, Nottingham Forest, Manchester City, Newcastle United, and West Ham United. He was the first black professional footballer to earn a transfer fee of £1 million.
Justin was a talented young striker. At the age of 17, he signed his first professional contract. His stunning goal against Liverpool was voted the best goal of the season in 1980. It was also regarded as the best goal ever scored at Norwich City's home ground, Carrie Road. Justin's eye for goal drew the attention of bigger clubs. Brian Clough, a legendary coach at the time, was among those persuaded by Fashanu's talent. He was forced to pay £1 to sign Justin up for his club.
Justin Fashanu's career was cut short after he revealed his sexual orientation on October 22, 1990. In his interview with the Sun, he revealed the truth about his relationship choice to the world. Clough was not pleased with Fashanu's way of life. Gay footballers have never been accepted in the history of the sport. Being gay is commonly regarded as a taboo in the field. At the time, Justin's brother, John, was also a professional footballer. He offered Justin £75,000 to remain silent and keep his sexuality a secret. John believed his brother wanted to become a football hero by publicly revealing his relationship choice. He offered to pay him in order to spare his family the embarrassment.
Justin was accused of assaulting a 17-year-old boy in 1998. On May 2, 1998, he committed suicide. He denied the charges against him in his suicide note. He admitted to leaving him at home after being released by the police. This was due to his concern that he would not receive a fair judgment at the time. His body was discovered in an old garage in East London. The talented and young professional footballer died at the age of 37. His niece established the Justin Fashanu Foundation in his honor to assist anyone suffering from mental stress in some way.
Justin Fashanu was inducted into the National Football Museum Hall of Fame in 2020. He is one of the most recent footballers to have his name inscribed in the museum. Justin was recognized because of his outstanding football abilities at the time. He was a promising young striker who was also the first black footballer to earn a £1 wage at the time.
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