Football's racism protocol obsolete: Ancelotti after Vinicius abuse

AFP , Tuesday 23 May 2023

Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti said on Tuesday that FIFA's racism protocol in football was "obsolete" after Brazilian forward Vinicius Junior was abused by Valencia fans.

Real Madrid forward Vinicius Junior listens to coach Carlo Ancelotti (L) during the Valencia defeat in which he was racially abused. AFP


The 22-year-old forward suffered vile racist taunts at Mestalla on Sunday in La Liga, with three fans arrested by Spanish police on Tuesday.

Referee Ricardo de Burgos Bengoetxea activated the racism protocol after Vinicius squared off with fans, singling out one whom he saw abuse him.

FIFA's three-step process involves the match being paused until a stadium announcement is made asking for racist abuse to stop, which happened at Mestalla.

The second step, after any further abuse, is to temporarily take players off the pitch and the third step, if it continues, is to abandon the game and give three points to the opposition.

"The protocol is obsolete," Ancelotti told reporters.

"The protocol had to be applied when the team bus reached the stadium, because the insults started there.

"Two hours before the game, and it was not an isolated case -- someone from Valencia said it was -- sure, it was not 46,000 people but it was not one or two."

Video emerged on Monday of Valencia fans chanting "Vinicius, you are a monkey," when Real Madrid arrived at Mestalla.

"The protocol has to start there," continued Ancelotti.

"If you start the protocol in the 70th minute, you have made a mistake.

"It has to start two hours before the game, and then during the game. It's obsolete, yes."

Vinicius was sent off later in the game for hitting Valencia's Hugo Duro and will not be able to face Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday.

Ancelotti said the player did not train on Tuesday because he felt some knee discomfort.

The striker said Spain was viewed as a "racist country" in a statement he made on Instagram late on Sunday, which Ancelotti disagreed with, but he called for drastic action to combat racism.

"Spain is not racist, I have to say that too, but there is racism in Spain, like in other places and that has to end," Ancelotti said.

"It's a moment to take drastic measures. Institutions have chances, above all now, to take radical measures on this important subject."

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