Madrid’s Rodrygo pays tribute to Vinicius with fist-raised celebration

1684962817 Madrids Rodrygo pays tribute to Vinicius with fist raised celebration
Real Madrid players walk out wearing Vinícius Jr.s No. 20 shirt. Twitter/ESPNFC
Real Madrid players walk out wearing Vinícius Jr.’s No. 20 shirt. Twitter/ESPNFC

Real Madrid’s Rodrygo secured a 2-1 victory against Rayo Vallecano in La Liga and celebrated his late winner by raising his fist in tribute to his injured teammate Vinicius Junior. Vinicius had been the victim of racist abuse during a game against Valencia and was absent from the Rayo Vallecano match due to a knee injury. The Madrid players wore Vinicius’ No.20 shirt during the warm-up in a show of solidarity.

Vinicius’ racist abuse has been widely condemned, with many famous sports stars and respected figures expressing their support for him. Karim Benzema opened the scoring for Madrid in the first half, but Raul de Tomas equalized for Rayo. Rodrygo eventually scored the winner with a powerful strike, dedicating his celebration to Vinicius.

Madrid’s fans also joined in solidarity with Vinicius, displaying a banner which read “We are all Vinicius, enough already!” during the game. The incidents of racism against Vinicius have sparked discussions about the need for greater collective efforts to eradicate such behavior from sports and society.

Real Madrid’s victory keeps them in contention for second place while Rayo Vallecano put up a spirited performance but fell short. Vinicius’ recovery from injury will determine his availability for future matches. Manager Carlo Ancelotti praised Vinicius for his positive response to the support he has received and expressed hope for his speedy return to the field.

In other La Liga action, Villarreal kept alive their hopes of qualifying for the Champions League with a 2-0 win over Cadiz, reducing the gap with Real Sociedad to five points. Finally, Espanyol hosted Atletico Madrid, who had the chance to overtake their city rivals and reclaim second place in the league standings.