Minnesota United midfielder Collin Martin came out publicly as gay through Twitter on Friday.
The Chevy Chase, Md., native, wrapped in a rainbow flag for his post, is the only openly gay active male player in a top-five league and the second Major League Soccer player, after Los Angeles Galaxy winger Robbie Rogers, who played one season for Maryland before playing professionally, came out in 2013.
“I’ve been out as a gay man for any years to my family and friends, and this includes my teammates,” said Martin in his post.
Martin’s announcement coincides, per his idea, with his team’s Pride night. On Friday, he and the rest of his team will wear slate gray uniforms with their numbers emblazoned in every color of the rainbow.
“I have received only kindness and acceptance from everyone in Major League Soccer,” he said, “and that has made the decision to come out publicly that much easier.”
Martin his played six years in the MLS, four with DC United as a member of its championship team and two with Minnesota. On June 1, he tweeted that he’d be supporting Playing for Pride and encouraged fans to match his and his teammates’ donations to the LGBTQ-sports charity.