LaLiga to file complaint over Vini Jr. chants from Atleti fans

LaLiga confirmed to ESPN on Thursday that it will report to the Spain prosecutors’ office the “deplorable racists chants” from a group of Atlético Madrid supporters.

LaLiga said the chants of “Vinícius chimpanzee” were directed at Real Madrid forward Vinícius Júnior and were heard in a video circulating on social media.

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The racist abuse came from fans that had gathered outside the Metropolitano stadium prior to Wednesday’s Champions League game against Inter Milan.

Europe’s football governing body, UEFA, can take action if the incident occurred in the stadium precinct and if it has been reported.

LaLiga said it will report the chants to the prosecutors’ office that specialises in hate and discrimination crimes even if it was not a game in its competition because the chanting took place outside of the stadium.

“LaLiga is very committed to ensuring that football is a space free of hate and will continue to relentlessly pursue any attitude of racism, homophobia, violence and hatred,” LaLiga told ESPN.

Brazil‘s Vinícius, who has been subjected to racist abuse since he came to play in Spain five years ago, addressed the incident on his own social media on Thursday in an appeal to UEFA.

“I hope you have already thought about their punishment. @ChampionsLeague 👍🏿 @UEFA 👍🏿 it’s a sad reality that this even happens in games where I’m not present!” he wrote.

LaLiga has filed numerous complaints to authorities for racist insults or chants by opposing fans against Vinícius.

Three people were accused of making racist insults at the 23-year-old during Real Madrid’s league game at Valencia in May 2023, with Vinícius giving evidence via videolink in the ongoing case last October.

Brazil’s Football Confederation (CBF) and the country’s government urged Spanish authorities to act on racist attacks on Vinícius.

In October, LaLiga unveiled a system to monitor hate on social media as part of their fight against racism, with its president, Javier Tebas, admitting that one of his failings was “not detecting earlier certain racism problems that Spanish football has.”

On March 26, Spain will host Brazil at Real Madrid’s Bernabéu stadium in an international friendly to raise awareness of racism.