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Colombian football club president apologizes over ‘lesbian’ barb

Bogota (AFP) – The president of Colombian football team Deportes Tolima apologized on Wednesday for describing the women’s game as “a tremendous lesbian breeding ground.”

Gabriel Camargo, whose team won the Colombian Apertura title in 2018, also branded female players as alcoholics and women’s football as economically unviable.

“I declare it wasn’t my intention to offend women footballers, let alone undermine their fundamental rights of equality, non-discrimination, dignity, honor and good name,” he wrote in a letter posted on the club’s social media accounts.

He retracted his previous comments and insisted that Deportes Tolima had always respected the labor and personal rights of its female players.

However, speaking to journalists in December he derided the women’s championship.

“It’s going badly, it doesn’t give anything, not economically, not any of those things.

“Apart from the problems you get with women, they’re more addicted to alcohol than men… Apart from that, I tell you, it’s a tremendous lesbian breeding ground.”

That brought a stinging rebuke from some notable women players, such as Yoreli Rincon, a midfielder with Atletico Huila, the Colombian women champions and Deportes Tolima’s traditional rivals.

“President Camargo, don’t forget where your sons come from… A woman or do you want a woman footballer to iron clothes and bring you the club’s plates? Respect,” she wrote on Twitter.

The women’s football league in Colombia, consisting of 23 teams, was created in 2017, with the third season due to be played in the second half of 2019.

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