Sao Paulo: Brazilian forward Vinicius Junior, who was recently sold by Flamengo to Real Madrid, played in what was likely his last match in Brazil before joining the Spanish football club.
Vinicius had several opportunities to score against Palmeiras in Sao Paulo’s Allianz Parque during the 90 minutes he was on the field on Wednesday, although none came to fruition, reports Efe.
In an interview published in the O Globo newspaper this week, the forward, whose transfer set Real Madrid back 45 million euros ($52.32 million), said he would travel to the Spanish capital “with his whole family” and live in La Moraleja, an affluent residential neighbourhood where his countrymen and future teammates Marcelo and Casemiro live.
Vinicius, who will turn 18 in July, said he “can speak some Spanish” since a private tutor had been teaching him “for three months.”
Last Sunday, Vinicius said goodbye to his Flamengo fans with a 2-0 victory over Parana in the legendary Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
Wednesday’s head-to-head was perhaps not what Vinicius was expecting for what was likely his goodbye match, as a fight between Flamengo and Palmeiras players led to six of them being sent off with red cards, namely Flamengo’s Cuellar, Jonas and Henrique Dourado, and Palmeiras’s Dudu, Jailson and Luan Garcia.
“The match got really heated, the referee lost control and we knew what was going to happen. The game was completely interrupted,” Vinicius told SporTV after the match.
Flamengo and Palmeiras tied 1-1, a result that allows Vinicius’s team to continue to lead the Brazilian Championship, four points ahead of Sao Paulo.
The Brazilian Championship will be suspended next month because of the World Cup and will resume in mid-July, when Vinicius will most likely already be in Madrid.