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Barcelona manager Xavi defends Vinicius Jr amidst goal celebration debate



Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images

The entire football world has been divided into two distinct groups in recent days in light of the controversy surrounding Real Madrid superstar Vinicius Jr’s goal celebration. While some have come out supporting the youngster, others find his dance after scoring an insult to the opponents.

Amidst the ongoing debate, Barcelona manager and legend Xavi Hernandez gave his two cents on the matter as quoted by Barça Universal. The Spanish maestro said that he didn’t see anything wrong in celebrating a goal in the fashion Vinicius does.

“Everyone celebrates goals the way they want. Let everyone do what they want as long as they don’t disrespect anyone.”

In light of the criticism around the Brazilian’s post-goal ritual, several of his compatriots have come out in his support on social media including Barcelona’s Raphinha. The new signing wrote on his Instagram: “I want to see dance. I want to see joy.”

Moreover, former Barcelona player and Brazil captain Neymar extended his support to Vinicius by saying: “Dribble, dance & be you! Happy just the way you are. Go for it my boy, next goal we dance.”

Amongst the long list of players to come out in Vinicius’ favour are Thiago Silva, Lucas Paqueta, Richarlison, Paulinho and Alvaro Morata.

Vinicius has been vital in Los Blancos’ eight-game winning streak across all competitions with his five goals and three assists this season. He is expected to start against Atletico Madrid at the weekend and will look to perform his Samba dance on the derby stage.

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Real Madrid News

Benfica have no interest in selling Real Madrid’s midfield target in January – report



Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Real Madrid’s interest in Benfica and Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernandez is now a well-known fact. 

As quoted before, the 21-year-old has a release clause worth €120 million in his current deal and despite strong interest from several suitors, the Portuguese side has no interest in parting ways with the player in January.

The aforementioned information is relayed by transfer market specialist Fabrizio Romano, who also claims that Fernandez’s former side, River Plate, also have a ‘percentage of future sale’.

Enzo Fernandez has been one of the breakout stars at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The 21-year-old has played three games for his national team at the world event and despite playing deep, has returned with a goal and an assist.

Interestingly enough, the 2022/23 season is Fernandez’s first campaign in European football. The midfielder has been with River Plate since 2006 and only moved to Benfica in July 2022 for a fee quoted to be around €10 million plus €8 million in add-ons.

In his debut season with the Portuguese team, he has so far scored one goal in 13 league outings followed by three assists.

Meanwhile, Real Madrid’s interest in the Argentine does not really strike as any surprise. The team from the capital city is anyway looking for a long-term successor to Luka Modric, but as it turns out, Benfica will fight hard to retain their man as they do not wish to sell their asset in January.

From Madrid’s perspective, they are anyway not expected to make any big signing in January as their primary target is still Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham. The England midfielder is highly tipped to leave Germany at the end of the season and Madrid are said to be the most likely destination if not the Premier League.

In any way, the fee for Bellingham might as well rise upto €120 million given the interest he has generated across the continent so it will be upto Real Madrid to decide between the two.

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