Spanish football has reacted forcefully with an unmitigated condemnation of the episode of racism suffered by Vinícius last Sunday at the Mestalla. The general feeling is clear. Being aware of the existing problem, it is necessary to find the formula to turn this into a before and after so that cases like this cannot be reproduced again in the League. In view of the reactions it is also clear that the solution cannot only be a matter of sports discipline. The Valencia Prosecutor's Office opened proceedings for an alleged hate crime.
The process will consist of gathering information about what happened from all available sources, including videos posted on social networks, possible police information and even the arbitration act. The tax investigation will address both what happened during the reception of the Real Madrid players on Avenida Suecia and during the match.
The AFE (Association of Spanish Soccer Players) and the Movement against Intolerance, Racism and Xenophobia also filed a joint complaint.
Until Sunday, nine complaints for racism had been filed against Vinícius, with the result of two convictions. With what happened in Mestalla on Sunday, solidarity with the Brazilian came from many fronts, from the emergency appearance of the president of the Spanish Federation, Luis Rubiales, or through the statements of the Higher Sports Council (CSD), of the Anti-Violence Commission, of the Football League or of Real Madrid itself. Also with the harsh words of condemnation from Xavi Hernández, the FC Barcelona coach, who could not have been more clear in his press conference: “If there is an insult, it is not played. The game stops and we go home.
Luis Rubiales was also conclusive: “Surely Vinícius is more right than we think. As long as there is only one undesirable person who insults people because of their sexual condition, skin color or creed, we have a serious problem that stains an entire team, a fan base, a club and a country”.
For Rubiales, the solution to the problem also involves asking the clubs to be less lenient: “I ask the clubs not to delay the procedures. If there is a sanction, even if it hurts, it should not be delayed over time. The current law did not allow us to act in the way we would have liked. In the English Federation, which is used as an example, there is a sanction, all parties are listened to, there is usually the possibility of an agreement and it is solved there. It will also be like this in the new law, although there will be a superior arbitration body. We are looking forward to that moment. Beyond other jurisdictional areas, the firm response of the RFEF must exist ”.
Among the statements, the one from the Higher Sports Council stands out for its harshness, which states that "these incidents are intolerable and absolutely reprehensible, not only in the sports arena, but in a country like Spain, a land of welcome and which makes diversity its banner." . The xenophobia shown by some madmen embarrasses us as a society and as a sport. Violence, racism and any type of discrimination are the antithesis of the values of sport, which are precisely those of respect, empathy and team spirit”.
Real Madrid also cried out to heaven for what happened. Florentino Pérez met with Vinícius yesterday morning to express the club's support. Then, Madrid issued a statement to show "the strongest rejection and condemn what happened" and to announce that "given the seriousness of the events, Real Madrid has gone to the State Attorney General's Office, without prejudice to its appearance as an accusation particular in the procedures that are initiated”.