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Former Professional Footballer Stephen Laybutt Found Dead in Australia at 46

Sad news from Australia. Former professional footballer Stephen Laybutt, who played football in Belgium between 2003 and 2007, has been found dead by police. He was 46 years old.

Monday January 15, 2024 at 8:51 AM

Stephen Laybutt had been missing since Saturday, when police were informed. After an extensive search, he was found in bushes on the northern coast of Australia, Australian media report. He had traveled from Sydney to the North Coast to visit friends. It is currently unclear what the cause of death is.

Laybutt played in our country between 2003 and 2007. In the summer of 2003 he exchanged the Australian Brisbane Strikers FC for Excelsior Mouscron. A year later he switched to AA Gent, where he worked until the summer of 2007. He also played eighteen matches for the Australian national team. After his career, he was in the news when he came out as gay. “It was never an option to come out during my career. Never. I didn’t even believe I was gay. I doubted. I had some experiences, but I had girlfriends and wanted to get married. I wasn’t ready for that, I didn’t know myself yet. Today, a child already knows at the age of ten and twelve that he is gay. I had to have more life experience before I knew it,” he said in an interview with this newspaper a year ago.

You can read that full interview here.

Stephen Laybutt during his period at AA Gent. — © BELGA

© Nick Moir

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