Real Madrid announced on Tuesday that Brazilian forward Vinicius Junior has signed a new deal that keeps him with the club until 2027.
“Real Madrid and Vini Jr. have reached an agreement to extend the player’s contract, linking him to the club until 30 June 2027,” the club stated in a release.
Vinicius, who is 23 years old, moved to Madrid from Flamengo in Brazil in 2018. He has become one of the best players in La Liga and scored the winning goal in last year’s Champions League final against Liverpool.
His current deal was set to end at the end of this season. The local news said that an extension had been agreed upon last year, but it wasn’t made public until Tuesday.
The club didn’t say how much the deal cost, but Spanish media said it has a one-billion-euro ($1.06 billion) release clause, which is the same kind of clause that was put into the contracts of several Barcelona youth players.
“At the club of my dreams until 2027 and for more titles together,” Vinicius wrote on Instagram. “The biggest and best club in the world.”
Vinicius came in sixth place in this year’s Ballon d’Or voting on Monday. He also won the Socrates award, which is named after the famous Brazilian philosopher, for his charitable work.
When he was a teenager, Vinicius was signed by Madrid for 45 million euros. However, he had a rough start to his time in the capital, hitting only 14 goals in his first three years before his big season in 2021-22.
During that season, Vinicius scored 22 goals and set up 20 others as Madrid won La Liga and a record-setting 14th European Cup. He played with Karim Benzema.
He helped Madrid win the Copa del Rey for the first time since 2014 with 21 assists and 23 goals last season.
Now that Benzema, the 2022 Ballon d’Or winner, has moved to Saudi Arabia, Vinicius has taken over as Madrid’s main attacker. However, he hurt his leg in June and couldn’t play for most of September.
It was just one day ago that he was honoured for his community work at the Ballon d’Or event in Paris. His charity, the Vini Jr. Institute, helps poor Brazilian kids learn through technology.
“I’m glad to be here for this reason. “It makes me happy to be able to help the kids in favelas in Brazil,” Vinicius said after getting the Socrates award.
Since he was abused racist things several times while he was at Madrid, he has also become a major figure in Spain’s fight against racism.
The latest event happened during the Clasico on Saturday, which Madrid won 2-1 on the road against Barcelona.
A video released by Spanish media seemed to show a home fan calling Vinicius a “monkey.” At the same time, something that looks like a banana skin was thrown from somewhere else.
He has played 24 times for Brazil and was at the 2022 World Cup.