Brazil transgender soccer team fights prejudice

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06/12/2019

On a late May afternoon, the Bigtboys soccer team played its first match, a friendly game on a flood-lit neighborhood pitch bordered by chain-link fencing. With only four months of weekly training in the bag, the Bigtboys lost 9-1 to the more established Alligaytors. But just being on the field was unusually liberating to players on a squad that bills itself as Rio de Janeiro’s first transgender men’s soccer club. And when striker Caique Rodrigues scored the team’s only goal, its supporters – mostly girlfriends and a handful of family members – screamed and shouted in excitement, temporarily drowning out their rivals’ more numerous, largely male fan base. For the two dozen Bigtboys players, the training pitch is also one of the few places where they feel at ease and can talk about their experiences, good and bad, without fear.

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