Real Madrid’s 2 - 0 win over Valencia on Thursday night, where Carlo Ancelotti’s men put in an excellent performance, was tainted a bit by the actions of Valencia defender Gabriel Paulista, who, in the second half, committed a violent challenge on Vinicius Jr, kicking the attacker’s legs without any intention to win the ball.
Today on Instagram, Gabriel Paulista put out the following statement:
“I accept the criticism and the red card. I’m not proud. I’m a forceful player, but a noble one. I respect Vinicius and it was never my intention to hurt him. We are suffering a lot at this great club, experiencing a very difficult situation and feelings are on the surface. Sometimes it’s difficult to control my nerves. I didn’t control them and I apologize from the bottom of my heart. I’m sorry fans. We’re going to continue fighting until the end to reverse this situation. Let no one doubt us”.
It is expected that Gabriel Paulista will face, at minimum, a two-match ban for “Kicking an opponent without the option of challenging for the ball, using excessive force,” as was noted in the referee’s notebook.