Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Three Valencia fans jailed for racially abusing Real Madrid forward Vinicius Jr

In 2023, the Brazilian star was racially abused at Mestalla Stadium during Real Madrid’s encounter with Valencia.

• June 10, 2024
Vinicius Jr (credit: BBC)
Vinicius Jr (credit: BBC)

Three Valencia fans have been convicted and sentenced to eight months in prison for racially abusing Real Madrid forward Vinicius Jr.

In 2023, the Brazilian star was racially abused at Mestalla Stadium during Real Madrid’s encounter with Valencia.

The three fans, who were convicted of “crime against moral integrity”  and “aggravating circumstance of discrimination based on racist motives,” were also banned from entering the stadium where La Liga and/or Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) matches are played for two years.

This comes as the first conviction for racist abuse in Spanish football by criminal courts and tribunals as the clamour to tackle racism in football intensifies. 

In a post on X after the court ruling sentencing his abusers, Vinicius Jr, 23, said the verdict is for all blacks.

“I’m not a victim of racism. I am a tormentor of racists. This first criminal conviction in the history of Spain is not for me. It’s for all black people,” the Brazilian star wrote.

“May other racists be afraid, ashamed and hide in the shadows. Otherwise, I’ll be here to collect. Thank you to La Liga and Real Madrid for helping with this historic conviction,” he added.

Before now, African players like Samuel Eto of Cameroon had suffered racial abuse while playing for Barcelona.

After England crashed out of Euro completion in 2020, three black English players who missed their penalty kicks, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka, were racially abused.

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