Ancelotti: Vini Jr. focused despite racial abuse

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Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti believes Vinicius Jr is fully focused on football despite being targeted with racist abuse, and backed him to show his quality against Liverpool once again.

The Brazil international, Vinicius Jr. who has scored three goals in his last three meetings against Jurgen Klopp’s side – including the winner in May’s Champions League final – has found himself the subject of abuse in Spain.

It has included a mannequin wearing the player’s shirt being hung from a bridge outside Madrid’s training ground last month.

But Ancelotti has backed the 22-year-old to overcome the abuse and elevate himself into the top echelon of world football.

“I hope they are working on this the people that have to be involved in this,” said Ancelotti ahead of their last-16 Champions League tie at Anfield.

“I think racism is a really serious topic, there is no law that can change the behaviour of an individual person.

“You can only change people through culture, a common purpose and feeling of humanity. Don’t blame Spain for this, it happened in every country.

“Vini is managing really well, he is focused on the game and loves to play football and this doesn’t affect on the pitch.

“When games are important we see the best of him and it is obviously going to be a big game tomorrow.

“At the moment it is wonderful to be watching Vinicius as every football fan likes his quality.

“They like to see Pedri, Gavi, (Kylian) Mbappe – Vinicius is up there with these players and we can enjoy quality players like that.”

 

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