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British soccer star Jake Daniels opens up about meeting his “soulmate” in his DMs

Jake Daniels wearing an Adidas shirt and signing an Adidas contract.

The romance started with a missed DM on Instagram.

When British soccer star Jake Daniels publicly came out as gay last year, he received over 20,000 messages, and didn’t see them for days. The 18-year-old’s agent took control of his social media accounts the day of his announcement, in an effort to protect his young client.

While that shielded Daniels from seeing ignorant and homophobic messages, he didn’t see the positive ones, either.

During a recent appearance on a BBC journalist’s podcast, the appropriately titled “How to Be a Man,” Daniels opened up about how he met his boyfriend. As it turns out, he was one of the thousands of fans who flooded his inbox.

“There was one day, I was about to get on a train, and I went on my message requests just to have a gander and the top message was from my [now] partner, just congratulating me,” he said. “I had a sneaky look on his Instagram, and I was like, ‘Alright!’ Dropped a message back and said, ‘Thank you so much,’ – and at the end asked something like ‘Is there anything else I can do for you?’ I knew what my motive was!”

That’s a pretty good line! Even at a young age, Daniels is one shrewd operator–on and off the pitch.

He says he FaceTimed with his now-partner that night, and they met a few days later.

And just like that, he was off the dating market!

Daniels came out last May in an interview with Britain’s Sky News. In it, he told the outlet he was ready to reveal his true self to the world.

Impressively, he was 17 at the time.

“I have been thinking for a long time about how I want to do it, when I want to do it. I know now is the time. I am ready to be myself, be free and be confident with it all.”

With those words, Daniels became the only out gay male pro soccer player in England, and the first since Justin Fashanu in 1990.

Later in the interview, Daniels, who plays for Blackpool FC, said he used to think being gay and a soccer player didn’t mix. He thought he would get a girlfriend, and outgrow his attraction to men.

That, of course, didn’t happen.

“But as you get older you realize you can’t just change. It doesn’t work like that,” he said.

Shortly after coming out, Daniels received messages of support from an array of British icons, including Elton John, Tom Daley and Prince William.

But it was the support from his teammates that meant the most.

“They’ve said, ‘You’re one of the lads. If you’re gay, it literally doesn’t matter,’” he told British Vogue. “I feel like it has brought us all closer.”

Now, Daniels says coming out is the best thing he’s ever done.

“When I did it, it was the best thing that happened to me,” he said in the podcast interview. “My life, everything just fell into place perfectly for me. It has just been amazing.”

Daniels says the love and support of his boyfriend is one of the reasons why his life is so amazing. Despite their age gap (his partner is 46), Daniels says he’s “definitely” found his “soulmate.”

“I couldn’t be any more happy,” he said.

We couldn’t be, either! And the best part is, Daniels’ life is only poised to get better.

Scroll down for more pics of Daniels posing for cover shoots, playing soccer and living his best life…

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