Former Manchester United defender Patrice Evra has revealed that he was sexually abused by a teacher when he was 13.
The 40-year-old Frenchman disclosed the incidents after writing his autobiography, and wants to help those who have suffered similar experiences.
In his new book I Love This Game, Evra writes: “The teacher, believing I'd gone to sleep, would put his hands under my bedcover and try to touch me. I knew what he was doing was wrong, so I tried to push him away and punch him... There were no words spoken in the dark, but he was touching himself and getting sexually excited by what was happening.
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“On the last night at that man's house, when he knew that I was going back to my family, he finally succeeded. He put my penis in his mouth.
“Years later, when I was playing for Monaco, the police called me. Some kids had complained about this man and the police wanted to know if he'd ever tried to do something to me. Because I was famous and worried about the reaction, I lied and said no. They asked me if I was sure and I assured them I was. I have lived with that lie for many years. I can't tell you how much I regret that.”
Evra told The Times that he informed his mother of the abuse a fortnight ago so she would be aware before the publication of his book.
He said: “The first thing my mum says is, 'if you don't sue him, I'll sue him. If he's still alive, I'm going to kill him.' There is a lot of rage. I know my mum and people from my family will do research and see if they can sue. But I buried this thing so deep I didn't think about [prosecution].
“Living with that was one of my biggest regrets because I could have helped so many people,” he continued. “I've had enough of this toxic masculinity. For my father, crying was weak, but crying is not being weak.”
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