Football legend Pele the only player to win three World Cups, died on Thursday in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He was 82.
Pele had been undergoing treatment for colon cancer since 2021.
His daughter Kely Nascimento confirmed his death Thursday on Instagram.
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"Everything we are is because of you. We love you infinitely. Rest in peace," she wrote.
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Pele, whose real name was Edson Arantes do Nascimento, helped his native Brazil win the Football World Cup in 1958, 1962 and 1970.
Pele’s Football career between 1958 and 1970
He scored 77 goals in 92 matches for the national team. This total was tied by Neymar at the 2022 Qatar World Cup, albeit in 124 matches.
Pele won 10 league titles with his club team Santos. At the end of his career, he played three seasons with the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League and won the title in 1977. He came to the US on a mission to make soccer more popular in the country.
Reaction to Pele’s passing
Brazilian Football Confederation
“Pele was much more than the greatest sportsman of all time. The King of Soccer was the ultimate exponent of a victorious Brazil, never afraid of any difficulty. A black, poor boy born in Tres Coracoes, Pele showed us that there is always a new path. He promised his father he would win a World Cup and he won us three, in addition to scoring 95 goals in 113 games with Brazil’s national team. The King gave us a new Brazil and we can only thank him for his legacy. Thank you, Pele.”
Former England player Gary Lineker
Pele has died. The most divine of footballers and joyous of men. He played a game only a few chosen ones have come close to. 3 times he lifted the most coveted gold trophy in that beautiful yellow shirt. He may have left us but he’ll always have footballing immortality. RIP Pele.
Brazil captain and Chelsea player Thiago Silva, on Instagram
Rest in peace ‘Rei’, God bless all his family”
PSG striker Kylian Mbappe, on Twitter
The king of football has left us but his legacy will never be forgotten. RIP KING ...
Liverpool on Twitter
A legend, icon and true great of the game who will forever be remembered. Rest in peace, Pele.”
Pele’s bio and football career
Full name: Edson Arantes do Nascimento
Date of birth: October 21, 1940
Place of birth: Tres Coracoes, Brazil
1975-1977 New York Cosmos
When Pele conquered America with the New York CosmosOn June 15, 1975, Pele made his Cosmos debut against Dallas Tornado
Intercontinental Cup winner (1962, 1963)
Copa Libertadores winner (1962, 1963)
Sao Paulo state champion (1956, 1958, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1973)
Sao Paulo state top scorer 11 times: 1957 (17 goals), 1958 (58), 1959 (45), 1960 (33), 1961 (47), 1962 (37), 1963 (22), 1964 (34), 1965 (49), 1969 (26), 1973 (11)
Brazilian Cup winner (1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1968)
North American Soccer League (1977)
92 caps for Brazil, 77 goals
First cap - 7/7/1957, Brazil 1 Argentina 2
Last cap - 18/7/1971, Brazil 2 Yugoslavia 2
World Cup winner (1958, 1962, 1970)
Copa America finalist (1959)
- Named athlete of the century by the International Olympic Committee (1999)
- FIFA Player of the Century (2000)
- Honorary Ballon d’Or winner (2014)
* Won three World Cup titles with Brazil in 1958, 1962 and 1970 - the only player to have won the showpiece tournament three times.
* Became the youngest-ever player to win the World Cup trophy at 17, a record that still stands.
* Scored 757 goals in 812 official matches for club and country, a record that stood for decades until Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo eclipsed his tally.
* Brazil’s football association (CBF) and Santos say Pele scored a total of 1,283 goals in 1,367 matches while FIFA puts the figure at 1,281 goals in 1,366 games. Other sources give varying figures depending on the types of games included.
* Netted 77 goals in 92 official matches for Brazil - the country’s all-time leading goal scorer, alongside Neymar, who netted his 77th goal in the 2022 World Cup.
* Scored 12 goals in World Cups.
* Registered six assists at Mexico 1970 - a record for one World Cup.
* Scored 92 hat-tricks across official and unofficial games.
* Scored 127 goals for Santos in 1959, thought to be the most goals scored by a club player in one calendar year.
* Finished as Santos’ top scorer with 643 goals in 659 competitive matches.
* Won Brazil’s Serie A six times with Santos (1961-1965 and 1968).
* Led Santos to two Copa Libertadores titles (1962 and 1963).
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