La Liga condemn vile racist abuse directed at Real forward Vinicius Jr before Madrid derby

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La Liga - Vinicius Jr lining up with his Real Madrid teammates before a match against Atletico Madrid Credit: PA Images
La Liga - Vinicius Jr lining up with his Real Madrid teammates before a match against Atletico Madrid Credit: PA Images

The racist abuse of Real Madrid forward Vinicius Jr by Atletico Madrid fans on Sunday has been denounced by La Liga.

The Brazilian was subjected to vile ‘monkey’ chants by Atletico supporters before and during the Madrid derby, which Real won 2-1.

La Liga have spoken out following the disgusting scenes outside the Wanda Metropolitano.

“We denounce all incidents inside and outside stadiums. We work with clubs to keep our football friendly and enjoyable,” a La Liga spokesperson said.

“Hate speech has no place in La Liga and we always work with the clubs and the authorities to identify and bring to justice any such case.”

President of the Spanish Agents association, Pedro Bravo, had caused massive controversy after telling Vinicius to ‘stop playing the monkey’ following Real Madrid’s 4-1 win over Mallorca on El Chiringuito.

Bravo has since apologised for his comments on Twitter.

His tweet on Friday read: “I want to clarify that the expression ‘playing the monkey’ that I have misused to qualify Vinicius’ goal celebration dance was done metaphorically (‘doing stupid things’).

“Since my intention was not to offend anyone, I sincerely apologize. I am sorry!”

Vinicius vowed to stop dancing. And quite rightly so.

On the same day as Bravo’s tweet, Vinicius said in a statement: “Weeks ago, some people started to criticise my dancing. But the dancing is not mine alone.

“They belong to Ronaldinho, Neymar, [Lucas] Paqueta, [Antoine] Griezmann, Joao Felix, Matheus Cunha… Brazilian funk singers and samba dancers, Latin reggaeton singers, Black Americans. They are dances to celebrate the cultural diversity of the world.

“They say that happiness bothers. The happiness of a Black Brazilian being successful in Europe bothers much more. But my will to win, my smile and the sparkle in my eyes are much bigger than that.”

There has been plenty of support for Vinicius, while Bravo has been heavily criticised.

After his side’s win on Saturday, Tottenham forward and Vinicius’ Brazil teammate Richarlison revealed that he messaged Bravo calling him a “s**t”.

Arsenal striker and another international teammate of the Real Madrid star, Gabriel Jesus, told Vinicius to not stop dancing before dedicating his goal against Brentford to the 22-year-old.

“The celebration was for my guy Vinicius Jr, it needs to stop and it was for him,” Jesus said after the Gunners’ victory.

Meanwhile, three-time World Cup winner Pele tweeted: “Football is joy. It’s a dance. It’s a real party. Although racism still exists, we will not allow that to stop us from continuing to smile.”

And Neymar wrote: “Dribble, dance and be you! Happy just the way you are. Go for it my boy, next goal we dance.”

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