Valencia plan to appeal a five-game stand closure imposed by the Spanish FA (RFEF) in the wake of Sunday’s Vinicius Junior racism shame.
The Brazilian winger was subjected to horrendous abuse from supporters in the Mario Kempes stand, with the game stopped at one point as Vinicius and other players sought to identify those responsible.
Vinicius was sent off in the dying embers of the game after retaliating to being put in a chokehold by one of Valencia’s players, though that ban has been rescinded by the RFEF.
Spanish football’s governing also imposed a five-game closure of the Kempes stand – affecting Valencia’s final home game of the season and first four of next season – and fined the club €45,000.
But Valencia say that the sanctions are “disproportionate and unfair” because they punish others in the stand who did not racially abuse Vinicius, and an appeal will be lodged.
A statement from the RFEF on their decision read: “The Competition Committee has sanctioned Valencia CF with the partial closure of the Mestalla stadium for five matches, specifically the Mario Kempes South Stand, following the events that occurred during the match between the team and Real Madrid.
“It is considered proven that, as reflected by the referee in his report, there were racist shouts at Vinicius, altering the normal course of the match and the infractions are considered very serious.
MORE REACTION TO THE RACIST ABUSE SUFFERED BY VINICIUS JUNIOR
“In addition, an economic sanction of €45,000 is imposed on Valencia.
“The RFEF Competition Committee considers that the referee’s assessment was determined by the omission of the entirety of the play that took place, which affected the refereeing decision.
“The fact that he was deprived of a decisive part of the facts led him to adopt an arbitrary decision. And this is because it was impossible for him to properly assess what happened.”
Issuing a statement of their own, Valencia’s response read: “Valencia CF wishes to show its total disagreement and indignation at the unfair and disproportionate penalty imposed by the Competition Committee on the club with the closure of the Entertainment Stand for five games.
“Valencia CF wants to publicly denounce that in this resolution of the RFEF Competition Committee they show evidence that contradicts what the national police and LaLiga say. In addition, this sanction is based on evidence that the club has not been able to see and without giving us a hearing.
“Valencia CF has condemned, condemns and will condemn in the most energetic way any act of racism or violence. For this reason we consider that penalising and depriving all the fans who were not involved in these unfortunate incidents from seeing their team is a totally disproportionate, unfair and unprecedented measure against which we will fight.”
Three supporters have also been arrested in connection with the racial abuse aimed at Vinicius, adding to four arrests made on Monday in relation to Atletico Madrid supporters hanging an effigy of the 22-year-old from a bridge in January.
On this week’s edition of Talking Transfers, part of the 90min podcast network, Scott Saunders is joined by Toby Cudworth and Graeme Bailey to discuss all the latest transfer news. On the agenda: Tottenham’s pursuit of Feyenoord manager Arne Slot, Bayern Munich’s interest in Declan Rice, Joshua Kimmich, Neymar & more!
If you can’t see this embed, click here to listen to the podcast!