Racist abuse pushes Vinicius Jr towards Real Madrid exit

Racist abuse pushes Vinicius Jr towards Real Madrid exit
Vinicius Jnr

Real Madrid winger Vinicius Junior is reportedly exploring the option of quitting the club after being racially abused by some Valencia supporters during a La Liga game on Sunday.

According to ESPN Brasil, sources close to the 22-year-old said that his team has suggested the possibility of finding a new club for the player.

The report claims that “everyone who works with the player is very unhappy with Real Madrid’s stance” after the racist incident that the forward faced this weekend.

Vinicius himself posted a strong statement on social media after the shocking scenes at the Mestalla Stadium on Sunday.

He said that he has experienced racism many times before in Spain.

He said: “Racism is normal in La Liga. The league thinks it’s normal, so does the federation, and the rivals encourage it.

“The championship that once had Ronaldinho, Ronaldo, Cristiano [Ronaldo] and [Lionel] Messi now belongs to the racists.”

He also said that he will not stop fighting against racism, whether he stays in Spain or moves to another league.

He added: “I am strong and I will go all the way against the racists. Even if it is far away from here.”

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Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has expressed his full support for Vinicius and slammed La Liga authorities for their lack of action against racism in football.

He told Movistar that he was not interested in talking about football and instead wanted to denounce La Liga bosses for their attitudes toward racism.

He said: “I’m calm, but what happened today shouldn’t happen.

“For a stadium to shout ‘monkey’ at a player and for a coach to think about taking him off for that… There’s something wrong with this league.”

He added: “For me, Vinicius is one of the best in the world. These episodes of racism can’t happen, it was the whole stadium – not just one person, as on other occasions.

“It has to be stopped. And I would say the same if we won 3-0.”

Vinicius has been a target of racist abuse since he joined Real Madrid five years ago, and especially this season after he started celebrating his goals by dancing.

The Brazilian has criticized Spanish football for not doing more to stop racism.

The game against Valencia was briefly halted after Vinicius reported a fan behind one of the goals who called him a monkey and made monkey gestures toward him.

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Vinicius thought about leaving the field but decided to continue playing.

This was not the first time that Vinicius faced racism in Madrid. In January, four people were arrested for hanging an effigy of Vinicius by the neck on a bridge on the day of a derby match between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey.

The effigy had a black figure with Vinicius’ name on it and a banner that read “Madrid hates Real.”

Police said three of those arrested were members of one of Atletico’s fan groups, and the other was a follower of the group. Some had previous records with police for other crimes.

The arrests came after a wave of support for Vinicius from Brazil and around the world.

Brazil’s president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva called on Fifa and La Liga to take “serious measures” after Sunday’s incident.

He said: “We cannot allow fascism and racism to take over football stadiums.”

Other Brazilian officials, including the justice minister Flávio Dino and the human rights minister Silvio Almeida, also demanded action from Spanish authorities.

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Almeida said: “Football, especially in Europe, has become a space where racial hatred can be freely expressed.”

“If one of the world’s best players is treated this way, imagine what happens to those who do not have the same prominence,” he tweeted. “It is in their name too that steps must be taken.”

Rio de Janeiro’s Flamengo club tweeted: “Football fades into the background when violence takes over. Violence for being who you are. Repeated, recurrent violence.”

“These scenes are shocking and saddening. And it is even more shocking to know that this isn’t the first time and that so little has been done to fight this and stop it happening again.”

“It is shameful that La Liga and its sponsors fail to take severe and definitive action against this situation which repeats itself in stadiums across Spain,” tweeted Belo Horizonte’s Atlético Mineiro.

Vinicius’ contract with Real Madrid runs until 2024 and there were reports earlier this year that he was set to sign an extension.

However, after this weekend’s events, it is unclear whether he still wants to stay at Los Blancos.

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