Pele, photo: Federico Pestellini PAP/Panoramic
“Pele is the history of world football. He is one of the youngest players to score in a World Cup and win it. It’s something special” – former Poland representative Włodzimierz Lubański told PAP.
The famous Brazilian footballer died on Thursday in a hospital in Sao Paulo, where he had been treated for almost a month. He is 82 years old. The cause of death was multiple organ failure due to colon cancer.
Pele is a three-time world champion. With Brazil, he won World Cups in Sweden (1958), Chile (1962) and Mexico (1970). He was 17 years and 249 days old when he lifted the World Cup for the first time. In 1958, Canarinhos beat Sweden 5-2 in the final.
“His story is the story of football. We will talk about him for a long time. At the time he played he was the best player in the world. Today there is Messi, Mbappe and other extraordinary players. At that time I started my career, I it was lucky to get a peek at a footballer like Pele from time to time, but it was quite rare, because we got information mainly from the press or radio.
Lubański played against Pele on 8 June 1966. The Polish national team lost a friendly match against Brazil 1:2. In the first half goals were scored by Silva and Garrincha, and in the 57th minute Jan Liberda scored a respectable goal for the white and red teams. The match was played at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro.
“This is a unique story in my sporting career, because when I was 19 years old I had the opportunity to play on the pitch against a player like Pele. Of course, there were other great players beside him. At that time, Brazil was the best team in the world. Meeting the players this on the pitch is “It was an amazing experience. Sometimes I see what he’s doing more than me in the game. Only that. We played in front of 180,000 people and the stadium wasn’t completely full. Knowing that you are playing against Pele is something fantastic ” – he reminded.
Lubański does not want to say whether Pele is the best footballer in history.
“It’s difficult to compare different generations, it doesn’t make sense. I think when Pele played he was the best player in the world. He created something that we still talk about today. He was an inspiration, he encouraged young people trying to reach the same level same,” he said.
“I watched Pele, his movements, reception of the ball, attacks and tried to imitate them” – emphasizes Lubanski.
With 77 goals, Pele is the all-time leading goalscorer in the history of the Brazilian national team.
Prime Minister Morawiecki: It’s a sad day for the whole world of football
“This is a sad day for the whole world of football. At the age of 82, Edson Arantes de Nascimento – or Pele – passed away. He scored hundreds of goals in his career, but the most important matches in which he led Brazil to three world titles will be remembered by football fans forever. He ended his football career 45 years ago, during this time he has been a model for young athletes and the good spirit of world football,” Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki wrote on Facebook late on Thursday.
“John Cruyff said that above all he was + the only footballer to cross the line + logic. Goodbye to a great athlete and a great man. RIP Rest in peace!” wrote Morawiecki.
Lewandowski: the sky has new stars
“The sky has a new star, the world of football has lost a hero,” wrote Robert Lewandowski on Instagram following the death of Brazilian football legend Pele. “Rest in peace Master,” he added.
Neymar: Before football was just a sport, Pele changed everything
The world of football mourns the passing of the legendary “King of Football”. “Before, football was just a sport. Pele changed everything,” wrote one of his successors in the “Canarinhos” team, Neymar, who, like his great predecessor, played with the number 10 shirt.
“Pele turned football into art as well as entertainment. He gave voice to black people and the poor. He made Brazil famous,” Neymar wrote on social media.
Another Pele successor in the Brazilian national team, Cafu, admits that he has lost a brother.
“As a Catholic, however, I know that when you die, you are born for eternal life,” said the 1994 and 2002 world champion. “See you one day, Pele,” he added.
Lionel Messi, also considered one of the greatest footballers in history, this year’s world champion with the Argentine national team, wrote: “Rest in peace, Pele.”
Cristiano Ronaldo, in turn, expressed his “profound condolences to all of Brazil and especially to the family of Edson Arantes do Nascimento”, referring to the real name “King of Football”.
“Merely saying goodbye to Pele, who will be immortal, is absolutely impossible. It is impossible to express the pain that the whole world of football is experiencing right now,” said the famous Portuguese and noted that “Pele will always be the best. ” only one.”
In turn, former Germany international Mesut Ozil mentioned that “with Maradona and Pele, the FC Niebo team would be unbeatable”, referring to the illustrious Argentinian’s death more than two years ago.
French President Macron honors the memory of “king” Pele
French President Emmanuel Macron honored the memory of “king” Pele, the legendary Brazilian footballer who died Thursday at the age of 82. “Ball. King. Eternity,” Macron tweeted.
“Few players reach the rank of legend. Only one becomes king: Pele. The empire of football is in mourning,” added French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne.
“King Pele has left us. His legend will never die,” commented French Minister for Sport Amelie Oudea-Castera. “He is the soul of football. A champion, a magician, a genius. His smile says it all.”
Stanisław Oślizło on Pele: deserves to be called the best footballer in the world
According to the former representative of Poland, Stanisław Oślizły, the late Pele is considered the best football player in history. “He is also a very good man.”
The “king of football” died in a hospital in Sao Paulo, where in September 2021 he underwent surgery to remove a colon tumor, and was then treated with oncology.
“I took part in the Brazil – Poland match, which was played in Rio de Janeiro, at the Maracana. It was 1966, and our team lost 1: 2. Our rivals are the current world champions and are preparing for the next World Cup. The only goal for the Polish player it was also won by a deceased player (Jan Liberda – PAP). My job is to keep an eye on the world’s best player on the pitch. Please remember how he moves on the pitch, how he does the ability to position himself well on the pitch, “said the former player told the PAP, among others. Gornik Zabrze.
He remembers that in that meeting he fulfilled the task 100 percent. Pele didn’t score, but another Brazilian did twice.
“I feel very sorry. It’s a shame that another great player has passed away. After all, Andrzej Iwan died yesterday, and today he is, said Oślizło.
He added that had it not been for the distance, he would have gone to Pele’s funeral to pay his respects.
Brazilian Federation: this is the saddest news in 108 years of history
“This is the saddest news in the 108-year history of the organization,” the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) wrote in a statement after the famous Pele’s death, recognizing him as “the greatest idol in the history of football.”
“The passing of our great idol is the saddest news the CBF has reported since its founding 108 years ago,” he said.
CBF President Ednaldo Rodrigues announced seven days of mourning in connection with the death of the “King of football”.
He added that he was “deeply shocked and moved” by Pele’s death and said the federation would pay “the greatest tribute to the greatest athlete of all time.”
“Pele is immortal and we will always work to preserve his story and perpetuate his legacy,” admitted Rodrigues.
UEFA says goodbye to Pele on behalf of the ‘European community’
UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin said goodbye to Pele, the legendary Brazilian footballer who died on Thursday aged 82, on behalf of the “European community”. “He played a pioneering role in the rise of football to the position of the most popular sport in the world,” admits the Slovene.
“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Pele, one of the greatest players of all time,” said Ceferin, quoted from the European Football Union (UEFA) website.
“He was the world’s first soccer superstar, and through his achievements on and off the pitch, he played a pioneering role in the rise of football to the position of the world’s most popular sport. He will be sorely missed. On behalf of the European football community, +Rest a little with Peace, Pele+,” he added.
The UEFA website recalls that in 1999 the famous Brazilian was named the “Sporter of the Century” by the International Olympic Committee.
“However, statistics alone do not fully reflect the extraordinary talent of Pele, who has raised the bar for top players around the world. No player has ever displayed such a unique blend of speed, touch, vision and flawless finishing. From his first virtuoso goal against Sweden in the final 1958 World Cup for a powerful header which gave Brazil a 4-1 win over Italy in the 1970 World Cup final.
In total, Pele won three World Cup gold – in addition to the 1958 World Cup in Sweden and 1970 in Mexico, also in 1962 in Chile.
UEFA’s website emphasizes that European fans – sadly – rarely get to witness the artistry of this footballing genius.
With Pele opting to play most of his career in his native country, the opportunities for European fans to get a feel for himself were limited: his first World Cup victory in Sweden, Brazil’s failed title defense in England in 1966, and a string of friendlies. mostly in the early 70’s with Santos colors. (PAP)
Author: Rafał Czerkawski
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