Legend Pele, Brazilian footballer who was hailed as one of the all-time greats and the only person to win the FIFA World Cup three times, passed away on Thursday at the age of 82, informed his family. ‘We owe everything we have to you. You have our undying love. Enjoy your serenity,’ Kely Nascimento wrote on Instagram. On November 29, the illustrious footballer, who was battling colon cancer, was hospitalised due to a respiratory issue. From his hospital bed, he supported the Brazilian squad during the recently finished FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
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 leading Brazil to win the 1958 FIFA World Cup for the first time. Pele, who was still a teenager, scored a hat-trick against France in the semi-final and added a brace against Sweden in the final to help the Selecao win the first of a record-breaking five world championships.
He participated in the team that successfully defended the title in 1962 before winning a third World Cup in 1970, the year that Brazil famously overcame Italy in the championship game. Throughout his career, he scored 12 goals at the World Cup.
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.