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Pele: Gwiji wa Soka wa Brazil afariki akiwa na umri wa miaka 82

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Brazilian soccer legend Pele, arguably the greatest player of all time, has died at the age of 82.

He is credited with scoring a world record 1,281 goals in 1,363 matches over his 21-year career, including 77 goals in 92 matches for his country.

The only player to win the World Cup three times, lifting the title in 1958, 1962 and 1970, Pele was named Fifa’s Player of the Century in 2000.

He had been suffering from kidney and bladder problems in recent years.

Pele underwent surgery to remove a tumor in his intestine in September 2021 at the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo, after the tumor was discovered during routine tests.

He was returned to the hospital at the end of November 2022.

His daughter Kely Nascimento has informed fans about her father’s condition with regular updates on social networks from the hospital.

On Thursday he posted a photo of what appeared to be the hands of Pele’s family on his body in hospital and wrote: “Everything we are is thanks to you. We love you so much. Rest in peace.”

Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pele, became an international star at the age of 17, when he helped Brazil win the 1958 World Cup in Sweden, forcing his way into the starting lineup for the knockout stage.

He scored the only goal in a 1-0 win over Wales in the quarter-finals, a hat-trick against France in the semi-finals and two in a 5-2 win over the hosts in the final.

What made Pele a legend?

He scored 1,281 goals in 1,363 games He played 14 matches in the World Cup finals, scoring 12 goals.

He scored 126 goals in 1959 alone The only player to win the World Cup three times Pele had made his Santos debut two years earlier at the age of 15, scoring in a 7-1 win over Corinthians de Santo Andre.

It was the first of 643 goals he would score for the club in official competitions over 19 years, although Santos claim a total of 1,000 once exhibition matches – often against top European opposition – are taken into account.

In the 1962 World Cup, Pele, then 21 years old, scored a fine solo goal in a 2-0 victory over Mexico to open their victory, but was injured in the next match and watched as his team defended their championship.

The last leg of his World Cup trifecta was unique to him. After being fouled out of the 1966 tournament in England, he was the star of the exciting attacking team that won the championship in 1970, scoring the first goal in a 4-1 victory over Italy in the final.

From his tears of joy on the chest of teammate Nilton Santos to his embrace with England captain Bobby Moore, Pele’s magic moments have spanned the ages and defined the history of the game.

He finished his club career as part of a star-studded New York Cosmos team, playing alongside German legend Franz Beckenbauer and fellow 1970 World Cup winner Carlos Alberto.

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