MADRID ( Associated Press) – Authorities are combing security cameras and social media to determine the identity of the man responsible for hanging a doll bearing the image of Real Madrid striker Vinicius Junior on a highway bridge.
Members of the Sports Anti-Violence Commission met on Monday and indicated that an investigation is underway to try to trace the person responsible for hanging the doll and the banner: “Madrid hates Real” from Real Madrid. hours before facing Atlético de Madrid in the quarter-finals of the Copa del Rey on Thursday.
The message on the banner is commonly used by groups of ultra fans of Atlético de Madrid, but at the time he denied being responsible for the message.
The hate attack was widely condemned by clubs and other football authorities in Spain.
Vinicius scored in Madrid’s 3–1 win at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium. After the game he said on Twitter that “there is only one Madrid. Everyone knows it” and that “Vini loves Madrid”. The next day the Brazilian striker published that “love always conquers hate.”
Vinicius was the target of racist chants at the start of the season. The state prosecutor’s office closed an investigation into racist chants by Atlético fans before the derby, citing a lack of evidence and dismissing the seriousness as the chants were allegedly part of the rivalry.
But the anti-violence commission indicated it is evaluating possible punishment for a dozen Valladolid supporters who insulted Vinicius at a meeting in December. The committee said each identified individual could be fined 4,000 euros ($4,300) to be banned from entering any sporting venue for one year.
The Spanish league also reported an offense against Vinicius in a match against Athletic Bilbao on 22 January.
Vinicius, who is black, previously complained on social media after being targeted by racism since starting to play in Europe.