'If you hurt other people, you must pay' - Real Madrid star Vinicius Junior calls for lifetime bans for football fans found guilty of racist abuse
WHAT HAPPENED? Vinicius Jr. was the subject of a vile storm of racist abuse in September in reaction to his celebratory dancing. A Spanish agent said he should stop 'playing the monkey', while Atletico Madrid fans were filmed singing songs of a racist nature before their derby. The Brazilian winger has now spoken out about the abuse, and suggested anyone who is found guilty should face severe consequences.
WHAT HE SAID: Speaking to Brazilian TV Globo, Vinicius Jr said: "If you hurt other people, you must pay. It's hard to say that [racism in soccer] will end with so many people still doing it. But I like to believe that there are more good people than bad.
"All the racist people must pay in some way. They like to watch soccer, so those Atletico Madrid fans should never be allowed to step foot in a stadium again. That will make them suffer the consequences and reflect about their actions."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Vinicius has already produced a powerful video, where he told fans he would not stop dancing despite the abuse aimed his way. Many international teammates came out in support, as well as Brazilian icon Pele, who said black players will keep "fighting for our right to be happy".
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WHAT NEXT FOR VINICIUS JR? Real Madrid take on RB Leipzig in the Champions League next, and Vinicius will be hoping he can grab himself a goal after not netting in his last five games in all competitions.