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Will La Liga finally address racism after Vinicius Jr. repeated abuse?

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Vinicius Jr.
Vinicius Jr.Photo/Sky Sports
  • He has faced racism severally, the latest one being at Valencia
  • Three people were arrested and faced trial after Vinicius abuse in Mestalla last season
  • Valencia were fined and ordered to close their stadium for three matches

Vinicius Jr is  a Brazilian forward for Real Madrid, who has faced racist abuse several times during his time in Spain, the latest one being in a Real Madrid’s game at Valencia.

The latest incident was from a Sevilla supporter in February 2024, after a child allegedly made a racist comment to him. The incident occurred during his team’s draw in which the Brazilian scored twice after his return to the Mastella Stadium for the first time since he was racially abused there last season.

According to some online sources, a child allegedly called him a monkey, and police were called during the match as he had been targeted by monkey chants at the Mastella stadium last season.

That was triggered by a celebration by the player on scoring a draw goal and unfortunately, he was also shown a red card for violent conduct during that match but had the sending off rescinded.

He posted on social media that it was a routine of racist abuse  and said that it was normal in La Liga as the federation doesn’t do much to curb it, encouraging the opponents. He expressed his disappointment to the heads whom he thought would work on that to show the racists that all people are equal regardless of their color.

In the last season, three people were arrested and faced trial after he was racially abused at the Mestalla, with Valencia closing the stadium for three matches as their punishment.

Vinicius Jr. Career

Vinicius Jr. is a Brazilian professional footballer who was born in Sao Goncalo, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on July 12, 2000 to Jose Paixao de Oliveira. His talent was evident at a young age and his father enrolled him at Flamengo’s youth academy when he was six years old.

Vinicius Jr

Vinicius Jr. Photo/Eurosport

Initially, he played as a left-back but later transitioned to a winger. After rising through the academy’s ranks, he made his professional debut for the club at sixteen years, quickly becoming a fan favorite contributing to the team’s success.

In the same season, he helped Flamengo win the Copa São Paulo de Futebol júnior, a prestigious youth tournament in Brazil. His performances attracted the attention of several top European clubs, with Real Madrod securing his transfer.

Joining Real Madrid at a young age, he was exposed to several challenges as he adapted to a new environment. Initially, he had limited playing time and his perseverance paid off, gradually earning more play time.

In the 2021-22 season, the player emerged as a key player for Real Madrid, forming a formidable partnership with Kareem Benzema and scored crucial goals including the 2022 UEFA Champions League final against Liverpool.

Vinicius Jr. career achievements

Though he is relatively young, he has shown a glimpse of potential in his career, achieving several accolades individually and as a team. Here are some of his most notable achievements in his career:

  • UEFA Champions League winner in 2022
  • FIFA Club World Cup winner in 2018
  • La Liga champion twice
  • Spanish Super Cup winner twice
  • Copa São Paulo de Futebol junior winner in 2017
  • UEFA Champions League Team of the Season for two consecutive seasons
  • FIFA World Cup Golden Ball in 2022
  • Socrates Award in 2023

Vinicius Racist Abuse challenges

The player has faced racist abuse on numerous occasions throughout his career in Spain. He has been subjected to monkey chants and gestures from opposing fans throughout his time in Spain and his effigy was hung from a bridge near Real Madrid’s training ground before a match against Atletico Madrid.

Vinicius Jr

Vinicius Jr. Photo/CNN

During a match against Valencia, he faced chants and gestures from fans, three people were arrested and faced trial after Vinicius abuse in Mestalla last season, Valencia were fined and ordered to close their stadium for three matches.

The most recent incident was when a Sevilla supporter was ejected from a match for allegedly directing racist abuse towards Vinicius.

These incidents have had a significant impact on the player who has spoken out about the emotional toll of facing racism. While some punishments have been handed out,  the Spanish authorities are being monitored on how they are addressing racism in football.

My passion is capturing the untold journey of global athletes from humble beginnings to superstars in their own right.

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