From the poverty-stricken town of Bauru in Sao Paulo working as a tea servant to becoming the man who changed the scope of football, “Pele” lived a full and successful life, going through his adversities and overcoming them as he did.
At the age of 14, Pele began playing futsal with the adults even though he was considered too young. In a futsal tournament, Pele at 14 years old finished as the top scorer netting 15 goals. During this success, he was scouted and taken on trial for Brazilian professional club Santos F.C. At 15 years old he signed a professional contract and scored on his debut against Corinthians.
In the next season, a certain 16-year-old won the golden boot in the division and got rewarded with his first Brazilian call-up. In 1958 he helped Brazil to lift their first World Cup trophy, and four years later repeated as champions. After the World Cup in 1962, the wealthiest of clubs all queued up to sign the Brazilian forward, however, Santos was diligent and didn’t sell nor did he want to leave.
Pele still has the record for the most goals in the Campeonato Paulista with 58 goals, and a record for the most goals for Brazil (77 goals in 92 games) albeit joint top with Neymar. In 1975, a semi-retired Pele joined the New York Cosmos and brought out some of the largest crowds in the history of United States football, winning the North American Soccer League’s Soccer Bowl.
After persistent fouling by Bulgarian and Portuguese defenders in the 1966 World Cup, Pele decided to retire from international football which shook the world. Was this the end of the greatest in the world on the biggest stage? Has the world finally got a chance to win the coveted trophy? No, God no.
Pele returned to international football in 1969 and played the qualifiers for the World Cup getting himself acquainted with his teammates again. In 1970, this was going to be his swan song, officially, the great will leave for good this time. The team he was on was considered the best in history consisting of Jairzinho, Carlos Alberto, Rivelino, and Tostao.Pele returned to international football in 1969 and played the qualifiers for the World Cup getting himself acquainted with his teammates again. In 1970, this was going to be his swan song, officially, the great will leave for good this time. The team he was on was considered the best in history consisting of Jairzinho, Carlos Alberto, Rivelino, and Tostao.
A kind man as regarded by many, including Sir Bobby Charlton and Gordon Banks, didn’t find him so kind when he flicked the ball to Jairzinho to win the game against England. In the finals, Pele scored Brazil’s 100th World Cup goal to get things rolling for the Samba Kings. He also had 2 assists in the game, winning the game 4-1 over Italy.
He is the only man to win the World Cup on three occasions, and the highest-ever scorer netting 1,281 goals in 1,363 appearances over a 21-year career. Mr. Santos himself, the King, the creator of “Jogo Bonito” the greatest of all time. Edson Arantes do Nascimento was 82 years old.