Media civil war in Madrid. ‘The beach bar’favorite show of Florentino Perez and benchmark of the white fans, faces the journalist Inaki Angulo, a thriving ‘influencer’ among the new generations of the Castellana club. Racism, Vinícius, Pelé, the giant ESPN and even the Congress of Deputies are involved in the fray.

If you don’t know what we’re talking about, read this chronology; if you know the facts, jump to the final epigraph.


Before the derby. Throughout last week, as usual, the sports press devoted itself to warm up the Madrid derby. If in May the controversy revolved around the corridor from Atlético to Real Madrid, league champion, this time it focuses on the Vinícius dances when celebrating goals.

Photo: Vinícius during the derby at the Metropolitano.  (Efe/Rodrigo Jimenez)
The lesson that Vinícius needs to learn: the smart thing is not to wage war on your own

Ulises Sanchez-Flor

The space in which the controversy is addressed the most is in ‘El Chiringuito’, which had been questioning the celebration of the Brazilian since August. Vinicius is annoyed that he is spoken of in these termsbut has not yet made it public.

September 15. Two days before the derby, the inevitable happens: in the middle of such a heated debate, and so many hours live, a talk show host loses his tongue. It is Peter Bravopresident of the Spanish Association of Soccer Agents (AEAF), who says that Vinícius has to stop “doing the monkey” and that, if what he wants is to dance, he has to go “to a sambodromo in Brazil”.

There are some first reactions on twitterbut it is the fine rain that anticipates the storm.

16 of September. the next morning, Koke, captain of Atlético de Madrid, check more fuel to the fire. Asked about the hypothetical celebration at the Metropolitan, Koke warns that, if Vinícius dances, “there would be trouble, for sure, the most normal thing”. Shortly after he replies Neymar, Vinícius’ teammate on the Brazilian team: “Dance, Vini Jr.”

The controversy crosses the Atlantic and in Brazil all the living forces are mobilized. The legendary Pele remember that “football is joy, a dance and a real party”, while the Brazilian soccer federation posts a video of Vinícius dancing, speaks of “racist statements” and uses a hashtag in Spanish: #BailaVini.

16 of September. Late at night, Vinícius posts a video in which explains the meaning of the dance in Brazil and denounces several messages in which he is called “black”, “monkey” and all kinds of racist expletives. “I was a victim of xenophobia and racism in a single statement. They are dances to celebrate the cultural diversity of the world. Accept, respect or go crazy, I will not stop,” he says. Anyone who hadn’t heard about it now knows that Vinícius is suffering and takes his side. Especially the Real Madrid fans, who throughout the night and the next day, charge against ‘El Chiringuito’ on social networks.

September 18. Derby at the Metropolitan. Before starting the game, members of the red and white fans they sing “you are a monkey, Vinícius you are a monkey“at the gates of the stadium. It didn’t take long for social networks to relate the incident to the statements made in ‘El Chiringuito’ throughout the week. LaLiga, Atlético de Madrid and, later, Real Madrid, announced measures legal against these chants.

On the pitch, Vinícius doesn’t score, but takes advantage of his teammate Rodrygo’s goal to dance in a corner, in front of all the athletic fans. There is rain of objects. Madrid wins 1-2.

September 19th. After the derby, and in the face of the avalanche of criticism, Josep Pedrerol apologizes to the footballer on the air: “The other day, Pedro Bravo, a commentator on this program, said ‘don’t play dumb’ referring to Vinícius. In Spain, this colloquial expression means don’t play dumb.” The journalist continued: “Pedro Bravo apologized and I ask for it. If it has bothered you, I apologize again. If you are also black, and it has bothered you, I apologize. And if you are white and you think that the expression It was unfortunate, I apologize. It may be an unfortunate and inappropriate expression, but it is not racist.”

September 20. On Tuesday, when the waters seem to calm down, the Congress of Deputies condemns the racist insults against Vinícius in the Metropolitan. He does it with vote of all formations representedwhich makes it a unique act in recent years.


That same afternoon, YouTuber Iñaki Angulowith prestige among Madrid fans, especially among young people and fans from Latin America, dropped the atomic bomb against ‘El Chiringuito’. He accused members of ‘El Chiringuito’ of having coerced Vinícius, through one of his agents, so that he would not publish the video in which he denounces the racism he suffers. “If you publish the video of racism, we are going to destroy you in the program,” says Angulo that he has received from the player’s environment.

In a few hours, the video exceeds half a million views, a remarkable figure even by sports standards on YouTube. The incident would not have gone beyond the classic ‘youtuber’ attacking the program with the most audience to be noticed, if it hadn’t been for important media such as ESPN Brazil they confirmed the story with the surroundings of Vinícius. “The intimidation occurred through calls and messages from the members of the program to the environment of the Brazilian player in Madrid, claiming that the public could understand that the program is racist and that it would harm themwrites the journalist Gustavo Hoffmann in the giant international sports information.

Pedrerol jumps like a spring. In a video published minutes later, the director of ‘El Chiringuito’ denies that this is true and warns that he will take legal action against Angulo if he does not retract. The ‘youtuber’ redoubles the bet: in a one-hour live show, he maintains that he has evidence of the threat and that he is not going to give up. “He’s totally tied up, totally tied up. Vinícius is also convinced and he’s not going to stop.“, he says into the camera.

“I know that I am facing Pedrerol, Florentino, García-Ferreras. I know where I am getting into and I am not afraid, because you have no way to touch my nose,” says Angulo from home, in pajamas, feverish by his audience . “Pedrerol knows that I have seen the lantern. Let’s see how egotistical he is and how he wants us to compare them. If he’s a little smart, he’ll let the matter drop. But if his ego gets the better of him, he’ll get into a big mess. If you want to go to the end, we will go to the end, because I have two balls and an army behind me.”

Late at night, overshadowed by the media commotion, a thematic medium of Voxmedia, one of the largest press publishers in the United States, publishes that Vinícius’s agent, Federico Pena, denies the alleged facts. “The player has not received any intimidation from the media. The news is 100% false“, write.

With swords held high, Real Madrid has divided into two factions. Those who believe in ‘El Chiringuito’, a minority on social networks, but who continue to put on the program every night, and those who see in Iñaki Angulo a new way of doing sports journalism that is called to do away with the old structures. In fact, the rancor against the sector is part of his argument: “There is a point of anger, of disgust, against this ‘establishment’, because they have been very close to not letting me fulfill my dream, which was to live from journalism. I knew I had this treasure inside of me [refiriéndose a su talento]but with all these dandruff, this trash that we have been listening to for 25 years without knowing why… These sheep have buried generations of journalists and, in a parallel universe, in which they would also have buried my career and my voice, they repulse me. Now that I’ve come this far, now that everyone knows me, I haven’t come to put my hand behind their back: I’ve come to kick them out and, if it’s in my power, I’ll try to kick them out”, explains in the program ‘Out Caretas‘.

With 530,000 subscribers, Iñaki Angulo’s YouTube channel has positioned itself as one of the benchmarks among Real Madrid fans. However, the legion of his followers, who has promoted boycotts against the program in recent days, he will be able to do little in the face of the legal dispute that is coming against ‘El Chiringuito’ and Atresmedia, in a ‘quarrelsome’ reissue of the biblical David against Goliath. ‘El Chiringuito’ not only exceeds Angulo in economic capacity, but also maintains the best relations with Real Madrid, as proven by the continuous exclusive interviews with its president.


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Peggy McColl

Mentor l NY Times Bestselling Author. Hi, I'm Peggy McColl, and I'm here to deliver a positive message to you!

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