Ian Wright has called out footballing authorities for 'not being serious about racism' and urged players to 'walk off' after Vinicius Junior again sub
Ian Wright has called out footballing authorities for ‘not being serious about racism’ and urged players to ‘walk off’ after Vinicius Junior again subjected racist abuse.
The Real Madrid winger was the subject of an alleged racist attack during Real’s 1-0 LaLiga defeat at Valencia on Sunday.
Valencia say police have identified a fan who made racist gestures at Vincius and that individual faces a lifetime stadium ban from the Mestalla after Real filed a race crime complaint.
The game was paused after the break as Vinicius pointed out to the referee those who were allegedly abusing him in the stands – and he later took to social media to say LaLiga belongs to ‘racists’ and ‘in Brazil, Spain is known as a country of racists’.
Wright sympathised with the 22-year-old, who is considering leaving Real after the incident, as he said on his podcast: ‘Seeing him helpless, it’s a horrible feeling, because that has happened to everyone that has been racially abused.
Vinicius Junior was once again subjected to racist abuse during Real Madrid’s clash with Valencia
Ian Wright claimed the football authorities ‘do not take racism seriously’ and urged players to ‘walk off and stop the money’
‘You literally can’t do anything, Your teammates will try and console you, but they can’t feel the hurt inside, to the point where he’s crying.
‘There’s no slogans left, no campaigns left. When you look at one should be done, we’ve seen the pitiful punishments that’s been given out to federations, to clubs, paltry sums.’
On what should be done about racism in football, the former Arsenal striker added: ‘I think the time now is for [players to say] “I’m not playing”, and walk off.
‘The only thing that they worry about is the money, if they walk out and they don’t play, they start worrying.’
‘People say “oh you can’t walk off because [the racists are] winning”, but they are winning.
‘Football is not going to stop being racist, they’re always going to be racist. But when you start point deductions, taking countries out of tournaments, they will stop.
‘How far are the authorities willing to go to say we’re serious about racism? Because they’re not serious.’
The racism suffered by Vinicius has been condemned by some of LaLiga’s most prominent figures, while others have attempted to downplay the nature of Vinicius’ complaints.
Wright sympathised with the feeling of ‘helplessness’ that Vinicius experienced
League president Javier Tebas insisted Spanish football doesn’t have a problem with racism and labelled Vinicius’ criticism as ‘unfair’.
Meanwhile, Barcelona manager Xavi issued a message of support for the Brazilian flair player and accused football of being ‘the only profession in which insults are accepted’.
Vinicius was also comforted by Real Madrid president Florentino Perez.
Perez held a meeting with the player on Monday where he explained how the club will defend him, while Carlo Ancelotti played down talk that his star winger could leave.