Atletico president vows backing after agent's offensive comment; plans to approach Vinicius for samba lessons
Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has pledged his support to Real Madrid forward Vinicius Junior ahead of the blockbuster derby at Wanda Metropolitano.
The Brazil international was subjected to comments with apparent racist connotations by Spanish football agent Pedro Bravo.
Commenting on Vinicius' dancing goal celebrations, Bravo told El Chiringuito: "You have to respect your opponents. When you score a goal, if you want to dance Samba, you should go to [the] Sambadrome in Brazil. You have to respect your mates and stop playing the monkey."
The remark subsequently drew widespread criticism, with compatriots Pele and Neymar leaping to Vinicius' defence, while Newcastle United midfielder Bruno Guimaraes suggested Bravo should be arrested.
Speaking ahead of the Madrid derby, Los Rojiblancos president Cerezo has also offered his support to the 22-year-old, while urging a collective show of "respect".
"I'm going to ask Vinicius to teach me how to dance samba for when I have to go to Brazil in the next festivals in Rio!" he joked to Marca.
"What we have to do is make sure that if Vinicius does score any goal today and if he wants to celebrate it, he celebrates it in a correct way and with respect for all the public in front of him.
"The players manifest themselves as they want, the only thing there has to be is respect for the people who are on a field that is not theirs."
Los Blancos will bid to maintain their perfect start to the 2022-23 season, having won all eight of their matches across all competitions so far.
Meanwhile, Atletico are aiming to bounce back after their 2-0 defeat by Bayer Leverkusen in the Champions League on Tuesday.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Sports Tak Staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)