February 25, 2024
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Pele, Brazil’s Legendary Three-Time World Cup-Winning Footballer, Dies At The Age Of 82

The only person to have won the FIFA World Cup three times, Pele was a legendary Brazilian footballer who is recognised as one of the game’s best players of all time. He passed away late last night at the age of 82, his family announced on Thursday.

“Everything we are is thanks to you. We love you infinitely. Rest in peace,” daughter Kely Nascimento wrote on Instagram. The legendary footballer had been battling colon cancer and was admitted in a hospital for a respiratory problem on November 29. He cheered for the Brazilian team during the recently concluded FIFA World Cup in Qatar from the hospital bed. Tributes poured in from the entire football fraternity and his fans.

Pele, also known as Edson Arantes do Nascimento, was born in the Brazilian State of Minas Gerais on October 23, 1940, in Tres Coracoes. He became a global icon after helping Brazil win the 1958 FIFA World Cup for the first time. Pele, who was still a teenager, scored a hat-trick against France in the semifinals and added a brace against Sweden in the championship game to help the Selecao win the first of their record-breaking five world championships. Before winning a third World Cup in 1970, when Brazil famously defeated Italy in the championship match in what was the first football World Cup to be telecast in colour, he was a member of the team that successfully defended the title in 1962.  He scored 12 goals in his World Cup career, that included a total of four tournaments.

It is only fitting that, throughout his career, Pele led Brazil in goals scored with 77 goals in 95 games. Neymar, the current Brazilian sensation, equaled his record during the team’s World Cup quarterfinal defeat earlier this month.

Pele passed away after being treated with chemotherapy for colon cancer. He was switched to palliative care, nevertheless, after he stopped responding to treatment. In 2021, Pele had a colon tumour removed, and ever then, he has been receiving chemotherapy.

FIFA also referred to the Brazilian football player as “The Greatest”; he had wed three times. He had seven kids in all.

Picture Courtesy: Google/images are subject to copyright

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