The daughter of Brazilian soccer legend Pele has announced on social media that her father, whose full name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento, has died at the age of 82.
Pele had been battling colon cancer since September 2021. In November this year, he was admitted to Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo for doctors to review his treatment.
Medical reports state the soccer star died at 3.27am local time due to organ failure caused by the cancer.
“We love you infinitely, rest in peace,” his daughter Kelly Nascimento posted on Instagram along with a photo of the hands of family members on his in a hospital bed. “Rest in peace.”
Pele’s official Twitter page also posted about his death.
“On his journey, Edson enchanted the world with his genius in sport, stopped a war, carried out social works all over the world and spread what he most believed to be the cure for all our problems: love,” it said.
“His message today becomes a legacy for future generations.”
The Brazilian football star rose from barefoot poverty to become one of the greatest and best-known athletes in modern history.
Pele scored a world record 1281 goals in 1366 games, and is the only player ever to win the World Cup three times.
Tributes have started to flow for the soccer legend this morning with Greece’s Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, posting on his personal Twitter account: “Pele was and will be the king of football. Goodbye, Pele.”
The post includes a photo of Pele celebrating his first goal in the game with Italy at the finals in Mexico in 1970.