Thu. May 23rd, 2024

Soccer legend Pele has passed away at the age of 82.

‘Known as O Rei’, Pele whose full name was Edson Arantes do Nascimento was born in Tres Coracoes, Brazil, on October 23, 1940.

The three-time World Cup winner had been struggling with health issues for some time and was taken to hospital in early December.
“He is quite fragile in relation to his mobility,” his son Edinho told Globoesporte in early February.
“He had a hip transplant and did not have a proper, ideal rehabilitation. So, he has this mobility problem, which ends up leading to a certain depression.”

Pele will always be remembered for the great moments over his career, his goals and of course, titles.

On November 19, 1969, he scored his 1,000th goal for Santos against Vasco da Gama.
Pele made his debut with Santos at the age of 15 on September 7, 1956, against Cubatao, a match in which he scored a goal.

Less than a year later, the teenager played his first match with the Brazilian national team.
It was on July 7, 1957, against Argentina at Maracana, and he scored once again. However, his goal was not enough for the Selecao to win the match and they lost 2-1.

Pele made his World Cup debut in 1958 at the age of 17, becoming the youngest player to lift the trophy. Brazil defeated the host country Sweden 5-2 in the final, with Pele scoring a brace.

Four years later, Pele participated in his second World Cup, one which was also won by Brazil.
Yet, he struggled with a groin strain and only featured in two games.

Brazil missed out on the trophy in 1966, but Pele led them all the way to glory four years later, when the Selecao beat Italy in Mexico.
Pele’s last match with Brazil was against Yugoslavia on July 18, 1971.

In 2013 he received the honorary Ballon d’Or for his successful career.

The Brazilian legend featured for Santos between 1956 and 1974, netting a momentous 1,087 goals in 1,118 matches and winning numerous titles.

In 1975, he moved to New York Cosmos where he played for two seasons and scored 64 goals. Pele decided to hang up his boots in 1977.

“In music there is Beethoven and the rest. In football, there is Pele and the rest,” Pele said in 2000.

In a poll conducted by BBC Sport in 2020, Pele was voted the greatest player, ahead of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Diego Maradona and Johan Cruyff.

 

A TRUE LEGEND HE WAS

TRIBUTE BY SOLA OJEWUSI

PELE: A MAN WAS HERE!!!

For decades Pele was the King of football, the world’s first soccer superstar. He won three World cups, a feat yet unmatched. He is reputed to have scored most goals in competitive matches and he is known as the pioneer of everything that is beautiful in today’s football.

In the view of many experts, whatever Messi, Maradona, Zidane, Mbappe or any other soccer superstar of today is doing or has done, Pele did it first. He was such a magnificent influence on world soccer and for almost seven decades, he bestrode the soccer world like a true collosus.

His passing today though much anticipated due to his incessant ill health of late is a huge loss to the world and the world must mourn. As we say adieu to this legend, we are happy that even though this generation may fade, Pele’s star will never dim. It will burn forever.

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