Pelé Edson Arantes do Nascimento
Early Years Edson Arantes do Nascimento or Pelé as he is known, was born on the 23rd October 1940 in the village of Três Corações. His father, Dondinho, also played for the Brasilian National Team. Pelé is pictured above (second left) with his father, his mother Celeste and sister.
Early Years Pelé’s family was pretty poor even thought Dondinho was a professional football player. Pelé did jobs such as shoe shining to make money for the family. Pelé loved to play soccer. In his new town of Baurú, he played for amateur teams such as Baquinho (above). At the age of just ten, he was playing in the Atletico Baurú youth team.
"That boy will be the greatest soccer player in the world." Santos Futebol Clube At the age of 15, Pelé’s coach took him to São Paulo to take part in trials for Santos. Pelé played his first game for Santos on the 7th December 1956. He scored the sixth out of seven goals in the game against Corinthians.
Brasil After just one season playing with Santos, Slyvio Pirilo, Brasil’s national coach made Pelé a squad member. He made his debut at the age of 16 against Argentina. Although Brasil lost 2 – 1, Pelé scored Brasil’s goal. Pelé also played in four World Cup’s, winning three.
Sweden 58 Pelé’s first World Cup game was against the USSR. Although he didn’t score, Brasil won the game 2-1. Pelé helped Brasil win the World Cup, by scoring six goals in the next three games including the final against Sweden.
Chile 62 The World Cup in Chile started well for Pelé. He scored Brasil’s first goal of the tournament against Mexico. That was to be Pelé’s last high point of the tournament. Just 10 minutes into the game against Czechoslovakia, he pulled a muscle and didn’t play any more games.
England 66 Brasil started well in England, with Pelé scoring in a 2-0 win against Hungary. Brasil’s happiness didn’t last long as they were beaten 3-1 by Hungary then by Portugal. Pelé was taken off injured in both games. The picture above shows Pelé watching from the sideline.
Mexico 70 Pelé was certainly influential in this World Cup. He scored five goals in the tournament. After this tournament, Brazil got the Jules Rimet trophy to keep.
Last Game Pelé played his last game for Brasil in 1971 at the same ground he had made his debut, 14 years before. Even though he had retired from international football, the Brazilian public pleaded with him to play in the 74 World Cup but it wasn’t to be.
Last Game x2 Pelé’s last game for Santos was very emotional. It was on 3rd October 1974. After 21 minutes of the game, Pelé picked up the ball, sat in the centre circle and raised his arms. It was then that the crowd rushed on and carried Pelé off the pitch.
New York Cosmos After leaving Santos, Pelé went to the USA to improve the popularity of the game in the country. He certainly managed this and finished his career playing for New York.
Pelé Quotes “I thought he was made out of flesh and bones like me. I was wrong.” Italian defender who was marking Pelé during the ’70 WC final. “After the fifth goal I just wanted to applaud him.” Swedish defender who was marking Pelé during the ’58 WC final. “How do you spell Pelé? G-O-D.” The Sunday Times.
Pelé The End