On Tuesday, May 23, Barcelona forward Raphinha showed a message of support to Vinicius Jr while getting subbed off during the second half of the La Liga clash against Real Valladolid at the Estadio José Zorrilla. The Real Madrid star was racially abused on the weekend by a section of the home fans at the Mestalla Stadium and was also sent off by the referee Ricardo de Burgos Bengoetxea during the second half injury time, a game which Valencia went on to win by a slim margin of 1-0.
As Raphinha walked towards the Barcelona dugout, he removed his shirt to extend his support for his Brazilian teammate Vinicius Jr written on his undershirt in Portuguese, which read, "As long as the colour of the skin is more important than the brightness of the eyes, there will be war... We are with you, Vini!" He also raised his right fist in solidarity with the Real Madrid player. The Brazilian was booked for taking his t-shirt off as the La Liga champions ended up losing to Valladolid by 3-1.
In response to the kind gesture, Vinicius Jr sent out a tweet with a couple of images from the moment when Raphinha got substituted showing the message of support. He captioned it, "RAPHINHA," with two love heart emojis and two praying emojis.
Meanwhile, the 22-year-old Brazilian sent out another tweet earlier with a video, to showcase how many times he has been abused racially in La Liga. He concluded it with a telling message of his own, which read, "You are not football, you are inhuman."
Carlo Ancelotti talked about the Vinicius Jr incident on the weekend and said, "We have been complaining about this abuse all season and nothing! It has reached the point where the manager must consider taking off his player because the game is not being stopped. There is something wrong with this league if this happens."