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Brazilian soccer icon Pele dies aged 82 — RT Sport News

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The three-time World Cup winner died in Sao Paulo after a battle with colon cancer

The football world is in mourning after it was confirmed that Brazilian legend Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pele, has died aged 82.

Pelé was admitted to Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo in late November as he continued a battle with colon cancer.

Doctors had announced earlier in December that the disease was progressing, sparking major fears over the condition of the three-time World Cup winner.

It was confirmed on Thursday that the footballing icon had passed away.

Pelé is survived by his third wife Marcia Aoki and seven children.

A prolific goalscorer during his playing days, Pele is considered by many to be one of the best – if not the best – footballers of all time.

He was revered in his native Brazil since winning the first of his three World Cups aged just 17 at the 1958 edition of the tournament in Sweden.

Pelé graced the competition with six goals in total, including a hat-trick in the semi-final against France and a brace against Sweden in the final.

Pelé and Brazil would follow with success at the 1962 World Cup in Chile, where he was forced to miss much of the tournament due to injury.

Pele tasted World Cup glory again with the imperious Brazil side that won the title in Mexico in 1970.

Pelé spent most of his club career at Santos in Brazil, making his debut for the coastal club in Sao Paulo State aged 15 in 1956.

He would leave the team as a six-time Brazilian league winner and two-time continental and world champion in 1974.

Renowned for his goalscoring exploits, Pele retired from the Brazilian national team in 1971, having scored 77 goals in 92 games – a record recently equaled by Neymar.

Pelé ended his club career at the New York Cosmos in 1977.

After performing, Pelé was appointed United Nations Ambassador for Ecology and the Environment in 1992 and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in 1994.

A further sign of his worldwide recognition, Pelé received an honorary knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace in 1997.

It was also in the mid-1990s that France Football overhauled its policy of only including European players for the Ballon d’Or, awarding Pele seven previous editions of football’s highest individual honor in 2015.

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