We have a side: why we defend Vinicius Junior

Sambafoot understands that the bravery of the best Brazilian player in the face of offenses in Spanish football has the potential to change the sport
2023-05-22 22:57:38

Vinicius Junior is the face of Brazil. The Brazil that plays football in the streets of the country, the Brazil that dares to fight honestly for a better life for itself and its family, from the nation that dares to smile and dance despite all the adversities.

Therefore, the systematic racial offenses against Vinicius in La Liga are, to a larger extent, an attack on Brazilians. The institutional manifestations regarding the case in Spain, whether coming from La Liga board or from the local press, unfortunately helps to broaden what happens in the stadium environment. Minimizing or ignoring what the Real Madrid star has heard from opposing fans is endorsing and repeating the offense.


On Sunday, as had already happened in several other stadiums in Spain, Vinicius Junior heard racist abuse in Valencia, even before the match started. In addition, as had already happened in other Spanish pitches, the number 20 shirt player was physically destabilized by opponents. Even worse, as happened on other occasions, the referee preferred to punish the Brazilian’s reaction.

The international football community reacted, from Neymar and Richarlison to important clubs in Brazil. Names like Kylian Mbappé and Rio Ferdinand also spoke out. After all, this is not a Brazilian fight, but a universal cause. It’s not enough not to be racist, it is necessary to be anti-racist.

Yes, Vinicius deserves all possible support. Even as a reward for his courage and conscience: when support failed, Vinicius didn’t back down an inch.

The young man born in São Gonçalo, in the metropolitan region of Rio de Janeiro, knows that he’s the voice of many. If racists are not intimidated by the best player of the most successful club in the world, what will stop them? Vinicius knows he cannot lower his head. This is a fight as great as his courage.

Now with the (delayed) official support from Real Madrid, Vinicius Junior focuses on the prejudice that lives within Spanish society, something that the country of the two most popular teams in the world must face.

Vinicius Junior has the potential to change football. But we don’t want a martyr – after all, the weight that the 22-year-old star has carry so far is already more than enough.

Sambafoot wishes the current best Brazilian player to remain courageous in the face of such complex challenges and hopes that the football community will mobilize around the young star. Sambafoot believes that Vinicius Junior will overcome racism.

Baila, Vini!