Pele: Brazil Legend Dies At 82, CAF President, Messi, Ronaldo, Others Pay Tribute
After losing the battle with cancer, football legend, Pele has died at the age of 82. Pele, who is the only player in history to win three World Cups, passed away at the Albert Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo.
In September 2021, he underwent surgery for colon cancer, followed by chemotherapy.
The Brazil’s joint all-time top scorer with 77 goals in 92 matches, became an icon of the game after winning the World Cup in 1958 as a 17-year-old, netting twice in the final to defeat hosts Sweden.
A message from Pele’s official Twitter account on Thursday read: “Inspiration and love marked the journey of King Pelé, who peacefully passed away today. Love, love and love, forever.”
According to Sky Sports, Pele’s daughter, Kely Nascimento, who has provided updates on her father’s health from hospital, wrote on Instagram: “Everything we are is thanks to you. We love you infinitely. Rest in peace.”
Three days of mourning for Pele have been declared by the Brazilian government.
Pele, born Edson Arantes do Nascimento, to a poor family in Sao Paulo, won the 1958, 1962 and 1970 World Cups with Brazil.
CAF President, Messi, Ronaldo, Others, Reacts
Meanwhile, reactions poured in from around the world to the death of Brazilian soccer legend.
Patrice Motsepe, the president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) has described the Brazilian football superstar Pele as “a unique inspiration to the African continent” who will “forever live in the hearts and minds of football lovers”, the continent’s football chief said on Friday.
“His death is a huge loss for supporters and football fans,” said
Motsepe also hailed Pele’s “commitment to improve the living conditions of the poor and marginalized”.
The three-time World Cup winner, widely regarded as the greatest player of all time, died Thursday after a long battle with cancer.
His passing sparked a wave of emotion and tributes across the world as Brazil began a three-day national mourning.
On their parts, Argentina’s soccer star Lionel Messi remembered Pele, while Brazil football star Neymar paid tribute to Pele and said he “transformed football into an art.”
France’s Kylian Mbappe condoled Pele’s death and said that his legacy “will never be forgotten.” Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo called Pele an “inspiration to millions.”
“My deep condolences to all of Brazil, and in particular to the family of Edson Arantes do Nascimento. A mere “goodbye” to the eternal King Pelé will never be enough to express the pain that the entire football world is currently embracing. An inspiration to so many millions, a reference yesterday, today and forever,” Ronaldo said.
The 37-year-old said the love Pele showed to him was reciprocated in every moment they shared, even those they shared from a distance.
“The love you always showed me was reciprocated in every moment we shared even from a distance. He will never be forgotten and his memory will live forever in each and every one of us football lovers. Rest in peace King Pelé,” he added.
Mbappe took to his Instagram handle to remember Pele. The footballer paid tribute to the legend by sharing pictures.
“The king of football has left us but his legacy will never be forgotten.
RIP KING …” Mbappe wrote.