The lights of Rio de Janeiro's iconic statue of Christ the Redeemer were switched off for an hour on Monday night as a show of support for Brazilian footballer Vinicius Jr after the forward was racially abused during a La Liga match over the weekend. Playing against Valencia, the Real Madrid winger was subjected to racial abuse after a confrontation between the two teams.
This hasn’t been the first time, Vinicius has dealt with racist abuse in Spain and often taken steps to voice his concerns regarding these heinous comments. Going back to Rio de Janeiro, the Archdiocesan Sanctuary that manages the Christ The Redeemer took this step in collaboration with the Brazilian FA and the Observatory of Racial Discrimination in Football to condone the incident.
The body further released a statement stating, “Christ the Redeemer Archdiocesan Sanctuary repudiates the racist attacks suffered by the Brazilian player Vinicius Junior. The lighting of the monument will be switched off as a symbol of the collective fight against racism and in solidarity with the player and all those who suffer prejudice around the world.”
Watch the video here:
Reacting to this gesture, Vincius Jr. thanked the body managing Christ the Redeemer for their support on his Instagram. In an Instastory, Vincius said, “Black and strong. May this image of a statue of Christ symbolize our struggle. Thanks so much for all the love. I will always be ready to fight for our ideals.”
Further coming back to Spain, authorities have arrested four individuals on suspicion of hanging a Vinicius Jr effigy off a bridge in Madrid amid the racism scandal. The Police have been investigating after supporters hung a blow-up Vinicius Jr lookalike doll with a noose around its neck ahead of Real's Copa del Rey clash with Atletico in January.