Javier Tebas admitted he hasn’t been in contact with Vinicius Junior since the Brazilian was subjected to racial slurs at the Mestalla.
The Real Madrid star was attacked with racist chants by Valencia fans during a LaLiga clash earlier this week.
But despite widespread support for the player, the LaLiga boss urged Vinicius Jr. to take social media to find out after the player posted a call for action.
Tebas has since apologized for his comments and at a press conference on Thursday expressed his hopes for the player to stay in Spanish football, despite rumors he could seek a move elsewhere following several similar incidents.
“I didn’t speak to him after what happened in Valencia. “I have no objection to that if he deems it appropriate,” Tebas said.
Javier Tebas admitted he hasn’t spoken to Vinicius Jr since the Valencia game
Vinicius Jr. was visibly annoyed on the field at this point and gestured in the direction of the spectators
Tebas refuted the idea that LaLiga was a racist institution and hoped the country’s bid for the 2030 World Cup would not be affected
“I hope he continues in Spanish football and we show that this organization fights against racism.”
Tebas first stressed that he had always personally respected the Brazilian star and claimed he predicted he would replace Lionel Messi as the face of La Liga and win a Ballon d’Or in the future.
And when asked what he would say to the player if given the chance, he replied that he would explain his own frustration with the current situation.
“I would explain everything we do to him.” I’m frustrated because I know it’s not being done properly based on the competencies. I would explain these problems to him because I was very upset.’
But Tebas also indicated that Vinicius was the target of abuse due to the quality he was able to show on the pitch, claiming that his great colleagues Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi had previously been frequently abused.
He claimed there was extra “vigilance” in the Brazilian’s away games as he is the “best player” in LaLiga.
“The great players are the targets of racist slurs.” Vinicius is the best player in our competition and he is the wrath of the intolerant. That’s why we paid special attention to Vinicius’ away games.
“It breeds that specific hostility.” Another mistake is believing it’s provocative. It’s not like that. This has already happened to Cristiano and Messi. It’s not because he’s a provocateur.’
Wednesday night’s clash with Rayo Vallecano was Real Madrid’s first since the Valencia game
The Brazilian’s team-mates paid tribute to him wearing the No. 20 jerseys
The LaLiga president insisted he wanted Vinicius to stay in Spain even though his future was uncertain
One of Vinicius Jr’s claims after the game in question was that Spain is considered a “country of racists” and that racism “is normal in LaLiga,” which Tebas refuted on Thursday.
He defended LaLiga’s image but claimed that it had suffered a significant setback since news of the recent abuses against the Brazilian broke, but accepted that it was the league’s responsibility to look after the welfare of the people players to take care of.
“I am concerned and we will work to find a solution.” Football is not racist. It’s a blow we’ve suffered and we will work to restore the reputation we may have lost. We will fight against this setback.
“I hope that there will be no consequences for the Iberian (World Cup bid).” Spain is not a racist country. The federation has our support and we want the World Cup to take place in Spain.”
“We protect athletes of every race.” LaLiga is responsible for everything that has to do with their well-being.
“We are not racists, I emphasize that again.” You always have to do more to solve it. “Excellence must be something familiar and lived in this matter.”
Explaining the process LaLiga had previously launched over allegations of racial slurs by Vinicius, Tebas claimed that after several unsuccessful attempts to seek justice, a new course of action had been decided.
“On March 14, 2022, in a match between Mallorca and Real Madrid, the prosecutor filed a complaint against Vinicius in the statements. In the game against Atlético, the Madrid public prosecutor filed a complaint again.
A likeness of Vinicius Jr. was hung on a bridge by Atlético Madrid supporters in January
Florentino Perez (centre) has called for changes to the ‘referee structure’ in LaLiga after Vinicius Jr was racially abused
The Real Madrid president has met Vinicius Jr to discuss Sunday’s racist slurs
“We decided to change strategy because the prosecutor’s office was not doing well. We were always left alone.
“For me, defending the competition is a very important issue.” Only today was an order to deport members of the Atlético front discovered. The only person present is LaLiga, no other institution.
“All this before the incidents that took place in Mestalla.” On April 4, Vinicius had to testify by video conference in Mallorca. LaLiga appeared and again alone with the player.’
Tebas has also been questioned about a previous case of racial abuse against the Real Madrid star, when Atlético Madrid fans chanted at the player before hanging a likeness of the player on a bridge.
Four people were arrested in connection with the hanging effigy after police launched hate crime investigations, with three of the Ultras having previously been “identified at matches deemed high risk”.
“He will have full knowledge of the detainees’ first and last names,” said Tebas when asked about the current situation. “They will not step on a field again because the judge decided so.”
Since the fateful game at the Mestalla, LaLiga has drawn much criticism, including from Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, who called for a change to the league’s “refereeing structure” and stated that Vinicius would be “held accountable” for his behavior and being subjected to it.
Vinicius Jnr has already suffered multiple abuses from rival fans in games against Valladolid, Osasuna and Mallorca in January and February.
Rodrygo scored the winner in the game against Rayo Vallecano and raised his fist in solidarity with his teammate
The Spanish Football Federation ordered the Mario Kempes stand closed for five games and fined Valencia £40,000 for the actions of some fans
Vinicius was absent from the squad that faced Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday night as the player picked up a minor injury following the game against Valencia that saw his red card retrospectively revoked.
His team-mates all wore shirts with the number 20 – his number at the Bernabeu – to show their solidarity with the 22-year-old.
Los Blancos won the game 2-1 with Karim Benzema opening the scoring before Rodrygo scored the winner. He refused to cheer, instead raising a fist in support of his compatriot.
Valencia have been fined £40,000 and ordered to close the Mario Kempes stand as punishment for Sunday’s events.