Brazil striker Rodrygo said he had received racist messages on social media accounts following an argument with Argentina captain Lionel Messi before the team’s World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.
Brazil’s 1-0 loss to Argentina in the FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifier in Rio de Janeiro, the five-times world champions’ third consecutive defeat, was marred by violence after clashes between police and visiting fans at the Maracana stadium that resulted in a 30 minutes delay in the match proceedings.
Messi, who accused local police of brutality, was seen interacting with Brazil captain Marquinhos and exchanging heated words with Rodrygo, who said he had received many messages with emojis of monkeys and bananas.
“Racists are always on duty. My social networks were invaded with insults and all sorts of nonsense,” Rodrygo wrote on Instagram on Thursday.
“If we don’t do what they want, if we don’t behave as they think we should, if we wear something that annoys them, if we don’t lower our heads when they attack us, if we occupy spaces they think are theirs alone, the racists will act out their criminal behaviour,” he added. “Bad luck for them. We won’t stop.”
Brazil forward Vinicius Jr., who missed the Argentina game due to injury, supported his teammate.
“We will not stop,” he wrote on Instagram and X, formerly known as Twitter.
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