LGBT group invited to watch Israel Folau play for his Super League club

A French LGBT group have been invited to watch Israel Folau play at his Catalans Dragons club's home game this weekend.

The Dragons have invited the Perpignan group to the match against the Salford Red Devils on Saturday (Sunday NZ time).

Folau - sacked by Rugby Australia in 2019 after he published social media posts warning hell awaits homosexuals - has been the target of protest over his comments which he has claimed stem from his Christian faith.

Catalans were criticised after a Castleford Tigers fan complained stewards tried to stop her bringing a rainbow flag to Folau's first Super League game in Perpignan in February.

However, a Catalans spokesman has told England's Press Association that the club had met with members of a Perpignan LGBT group, which will have an information stand at the stadium this weekend.

"We had a meeting earlier this week with them and it was really positive," said the spokesman. "They understood our position and the reasons we organised this action.

"In fact, they invited us in the press to open the discussions so we replied. We all want to build something positive.

"It was important to show our stadium is a place of friendship, warmth and hospitality, in particular after the bad buzz created by the fake story of the Castleford Tigers fan."

Folau is set to play his third game for Catalans in the centres against a Salford side featuring former Warriors, Wests Tigers and Kiwis standoff Tui Lolohea.

Catalans - the 2018 Challenge Cup champions - are sixth in the 12-team Super League standings, while Salford - Super League grand final runners-up last season - are 10th.