Vinicius Junior criticized the Real Madrid winger for the way he treats referees in La Liga.
The Brazilian has cemented his place as one of the world’s best players over the past two seasons and has become a crowd favorite at the Bernabeu after long being derided for frustrating inconsistencies.
However, such is Vinicius’ talent and ability to take on players that he is often the victim of more difficult challenges on a frequent basis that often go unpunished – a similar situation developing in England with Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka.
Vinicius has been fouled 89 times already La Liga This season – an astonishing 23 more than the player ranked second on that list – but he has picked up eight bookings, most of which came to the opposition after bemoaning foul tackles.
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The 22-year-old has previously spoken out about his anger at such treatment, and spoke his mind a bit more in a new interview with ESPN.
“The referees do not make mistakes and do not give yellow cards,” Vinicius began. “Players can attack me 15 times, and at the end, when the match is in the 88th minute, the referee gives a yellow card.
“The players have to think of a way to stop me, and by doing so [committing fouls and not being punished]It becomes very easy for them. I don’t judge the players, but I do judge the referees, because they have to apply the rules correctly.
“I don’t ask anyone to protect me. No one has protected me in my life, except for my teammates, my parents and the people who love me… What I have to do is try to keep my head clear.
“Obviously I make mistakes sometimes, I’m only 22. I’m going to make a lot of mistakes. But I want to make fewer mistakes and try to keep learning.”