RIP Pele: Tributes pour in for Brazilian legend regarded as football's greatest ever
RIP Pele: The greatest Brazilian footballer has passed away at 82 after suffering from cancer for over a year. Consequently, following his death, tributes have begun to pour in from all across the football fraternity.
In a dark day for the football world, the most significant Brazilian legend of all-time and legendary striker, Pele, passed away on Thursday. He breathed his last at the Albert Einstein Israelite Hospital in Sao Paolo, where he was undergoing treatment for cancer. Last year in September, he had a tumour removed from his right colon. Despite being told by his family members that he was doing well, he remained under intensive care for a few days before being released later during the month to begin his chemotherapy. Last month, it was reported that he was hospitalised again for "general swelling" and had some cardiac issues.
While Pele underwent a fresh round of treatment during the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar, he was reportedly not responding well to the chemotherapy. In contrast, his family maintained that there was "no emergency" as such. However, earlier this month, the hospital clarified that his tumour was advanced and would require "greater care related to renal and cardiac dysfunctions".
As for his outstanding career, Pele began his youth career with Bauru in 1953 before making his senior debut with Santos in 1956 before moving to New York Cosmos in 1975. As for his club career, he plundered a mammoth 1,261 goals for Santos before adding 66 more with the Cosmos.
Pele made his Brazil debut in 1957 and played for the side until 1971, scoring 77 in 92 appearances. He won 27 career titles at the club level, including six Brazilian Serie A trophied with Santos and a couple of Copa Libertadores. At the same time, he also won a North American Soccer League Soccer Bowl.
With Brazil, Pele won three FIFA World Cup titles, in 1958, 1962 and 1970, besides adding seven more trophies to the yellow jersey. On an individual note, he won countless awards, including eight special honours bestowed upon him by the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA). Meanwhile, tributes have already flowed in from all across the football globe.