Ancelotti and Tchouameni unite to back Vinicius as Garcia says Real Madrid star is 'provoked too much'

By Sports Desk February 10, 2023

Carlo Ancelotti resolved to help Real Madrid forward Vinicius Junior through the strife affecting him on and off the pitch.

Vinicius has been become a regular target for racist abuse from fans this season, with footage on social media appearing to show discriminatory remarks being directed at him during Madrid's 1-0 defeat to Real Mallorca last Sunday.

Athletic Bilbao midfielder Dani Garcia said in an interview released by Spanish news outlet Durangaldeko Telebista on Friday that he believed Mallorca players had "gone too far" in winding up Vinicius during that game.

Garcia said Vinicius "sometimes makes gestures that he should not do, but then I think that he is also provoked too much", and that by becoming rattled by opponents "he gets hot and honestly it doesn't do him any good".

None of that excuses or serves to explain the racism Vinicius has encountered from the stands, but working through the on-pitch battles he encounters is an area Madrid may be able to influence as they look to get the best out of the Brazil international.

Garcia said he had chided Vinicius more than he would other players in the past, and Madrid head coach Ancelotti is eager to find ways to make life easier for the 22-year-old.

"If you think there is a problem, you have to find a solution," Ancelotti said, speaking ahead of Saturday's Club World Cup final against Al Hilal in Rabat.

"We are not stupid. We are going to find a solution."

Team-mate Aurelien Tchouameni also wants to support Vinicius and hopes LaLiga will take firm action to allow the former Flamengo player to flourish, no longer fearful of facing vile abuse from the stands.

"Vini is fine. We know that there are difficult moments in football, against opponents, the public," Tchouameni said. "We are with him. The important thing is that he focuses on football and shows his level."

Tchouameni, who is also black, said this episode of racism was not an isolated problem.

"Against racism, there should be zero tolerance and it is something that must be eradicated as much as possible," France international Tchouameni said.

"It doesn't matter if they are white, black or red. LaLiga can also take measures, and we hope that the situation will change."

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