Former Leeds United footballer Robbie Rogers retired from football, after openly declaring that he was a homosexual on Friday.
In a statement released this week, Rogers said he needed time to discover himself, after living a life of secrecy on the football field. He is one of only three footballers who have admitted they were gay in the past.
Playing the sport provided, what Rogers felt was the ideal cover for his sexual orientation. However, determined to be honest with himself and his peers, Rogers has opted to come out of the proverbial closet.
"I always thought I could hide this secret. Football was my escape, my purpose, my identity," said Rogers.
"Now is my time to step away. It's time to discover myself away from football," he added.
"For the past 25 years I have been afraid, afraid to show who I really was because of fear," said Rogers.
"Secrets can cause so much internal damage. People love to preach about honesty, how honesty is so plain and simple. Try explaining to your loved ones after 25 years you are gay.
"Football hid my secret, gave me more joy than I could have ever imagined - I will always be thankful for my career.
"[Now] my secret is gone, I am a free man, I can move on and live my life as my creator intended."
While this case might seem unique, the Football Association would have the public believe there are more cases of homosexuality in British football.
However, in most instances players are not comfortable with declaring their homosexuality.
"We do have players who've said that, while they are gay, they don't feel comfortable enough to come out," said Gordon Taylor, the Chief Executive of the Professional Footballer's Association.
Prior to Rogers' disclosure, there had been two exceptions to the rule.
In 1990, former England Under-21 international Justin Fashanu was the first professional footballer in Britain to reveal he was gay. He took his life eight years later, aged 37.
Swedish lower league player Anton Hysen, son of former Liverpool player Glenn Hysen, publicly announced his homosexuality in 2011.
Darren Bailey, the FA's director of football governance and regulation, added: "Following the announcement by Robbie Rogers on Friday, the FA is trying to make contact with him offering our support.
"Whether Robbie stays in the game or steps away for a break he has our full backing."
The FA last year launched a six-point action plan to make the game more inclusive, as well as tackling homophobia and transphobia.
"We do have players who've said that, while they are gay, they don't feel comfortable enough to come out," said Taylor.
"It's not dissimilar to many black players, and we need to create a safe environment for them on and off the field.
"We know of players who are playing who are gay who've not had that confidence as yet. But, as the rest of the world becomes more civilised, hopefully that will come."