The Crystal Palace manager revealed a strong admiration for Mandela, who he was able to meet through his career.
As part of the interview, he was asked to look back at his earlier years, leaving Senegal for France as a child and the experiences that entailed.
“When you are a kid you are quite naïve,” Vieira said. “You just want to play with friends and don’t make anything of colour. You just want to play with the guys living next door or the kid kicking the ball around. The question we have to ask is when we are growing up, why did skin colour become a problem?
“You grow up with people calling you different names and it’s difficult to understand... With time, family talking to you, looking at the TV, reading books, you understand we’re living in a world where racism is a big issue.
“When you grow up you understand people can’t get a job because of the colour of their skin, people can’t rent an apartment because they decided they don’t want black people living in that building. All this information you take in because you open your mind a little bit more, you see that you’re living in a world where having black skin can stop you being who you want to be. It’s difficult to accept.”