Players and fans unite in support of Real Madrid forward Vinicius (BRA) after he was criticized for racism.
Real Madrid hosted Rayo Vallecano in the 36th round of the 2022-23 Spanish Primera Liga (La Liga) at the Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid, Spain, on Sept. 25.
Vinicius was absent from the match due to injury, and all Real Madrid players wore jerseys with Vinicius’ number 20 on the back.
Not only Real Madrid, but Bayekano players also performed before the game with the message that racism must be eliminated. The captains of both teams wore armbands with anti-racism messages.
Fans also held up a giant “We are Vinicius” sign in support of Vinicius, who had recently been the victim of racism. They then chanted his name in unison in the 20th minute of the first half.
Watching the game from the stands next to Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, Vinicius stood up and waved to the fans to show his appreciation.
The Brazilian striker has been embroiled in racism controversy recently, as he was involved in an altercation with opposing fans during a match against Valencia on April 22. Racist chants of “monkey, monkey” were heard from the stands, which led to an emotional clash with the crowd.
“This is not the first time, not the second time, not the third time. Racism has become normalized in La Liga,” he said in an angry message after the game. 스포츠토토
Spanish police later arrested three people for making racist remarks at the stadium and arrested a fourth for dangling a doll with Vinicius’ name from a bridge. The Spanish soccer federation also disciplined Valencia for failing to stop the racist behavior on the field.
La Liga president Javier Tebas, who had come under fire after Vinicius’ comments for blaming the player and saying that “racism is extremely rare in La Liga,” eventually apologized and bowed out later in the day.
Without Vinicius, Real Madrid held on for a 2-1 victory thanks to a 44th-minute winner from Hodriguez.
Real Madrid moved into second place with 23 wins, five draws, and eight losses (74 points), pushing Atletico Madrid (73 points) into third. Bayekano remained in 11th place (46 points).