Pelé the ‘Black Pearl’ and Football’s God is no more


For legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, there is no one like him, while Indian football icon Baichung Bhutia calls The Black Pearl the ‘true king‘ of the game and sent emotional tributes from all sides in memory of the legendary Pele. Pelé, one of the greatest players of all time and the only footballer to ever win three World Cup titles, died at the age of 82 after a long battle with colon cancer.

Pelé, whose name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento, has set a world record of 1,281 goals and is the only player to win the World Cup three times. With great skill and a smile, he has helped make football the most popular sport in the world, attracting popes, presidents and his Hollywood stars during his 70-year career as a player and sports ambassador. Pele got many nicknames like ‘Black Pearl’, ‘King of Football’, ‘King Pele’. Pele was one of the most expensive footballers of his era.

During his 22-year professional career, Pele made more than 1,300 appearances and scored about the same number of goals, but he was no one-man show. He viewed the field the way a chess master views the board – two, three, four minions – the tactical ability to pass to better positioned teammates.It was only 20 years ago that the President of Brazil declared it an official national treasure. It was a respectable economic restraint. It prevented him from moving to wealthy European clubs willing to pay large sums for his services. Pelé was an asset too important to the national interest to export.

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