Soccer Star Gabriella Howell’s Racy Photos Spark Controversy

Soccer Star Gabriella Howell’s Racy Photos Spark Controversy

English soccer star Gabriella Howell has achieved a rare feat. Not only is she an extremely successful athlete, but she was also able to cultivate a sizeable following on social media in an effort to create a second lucrative potential revenue stream.

Unfortunately, that has come with its fair share of positives and negatives.

The positives speak for themselves.

The negatives? Well, they involve Howell often being on the wrong end of a lot of internet criticism.

This week, Howell opened up about the sort of reactions her provocative photos lead to her getting.

“Men will say they’re horny underneath my photos of me playing football — and if I tag my club in the post it’s embarrassing,” Howell told The Mirror.

Howell boasts an audience of more than 170,000 Instagram followers, so any time she posts anything, it immediately goes viral:

As far as Howell is concerned, you don’t have to be completely covered up if you’re a soccer player. You can still express yourself.

“You can be both: you can play football and like wearing high heels,” she said.

That said, no matter how bad the criticism gets, Howell doesn’t delete the comments under her posts.

“I like to keep [the hateful comments] on my profiles and I don’t delete them,” Howell admitted. “Young girls think they want to be an influencer but they don’t see the downsides. I like to make people aware. Not everyone’s going to like you. I repeat that to myself when I see these comments. You’ve just got to develop a thick skin.”

Howell’s experience is not unique. Many women in sports face similar critiques.

Not long ago, a college football SEC reporter sparked major controversy because her outfit choice was deemed too revealing.

Maria Taylor, who previously worked for ESPN and now serves as a personality at NBC, also once caught a lot of backlash for her ‘provocative’ choice of wardrobe.

This is a common thing. So it’s a good thing Howell is bringing attention to it. Hopefully as more and more light is drawn on this sort of behavior, further efforts will be made to stop the abuse these women receive.

Related: Blake Griffin Explains Why Nets Are Struggling Against Celtics

Carlos Garcia

A longtime sports reporter, Carlos Garcia has written about some of the biggest and most notable athletic events of the last 5 years. He has been credentialed to cover MLS, NBA and MLB games all over the United States. His work has been published on Fox Sports, Bleacher Report, AOL and the Washington Post.
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