Brazilian soccer legend Pele in hospital, says he's 'strong'

Sunday, 4 December 2022 (12:10 IST)
Brazilian soccer great Pele remains in stable condition and is responding well to treatment for a respiratory infection, the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo said on Saturday. 

The 82-year-old has been at the hospital since Tuesday.

He is receiving antibiotics to treat an infection while undergoing chemotherapy against cancer, medical staff said Friday.

"He is still undergoing treatment and remains in stable condition," they said.

Pele said on Saturday that he feels "strong, with a lot of hope."

"I'm strong, with a lot of hope, and I follow my treatment as usual. I want to thank the entire medical and nursing team for all the care I have received,'' Pele said in a statement on Instagram.

"I have a lot of faith in God, and every message of love I receive from you all over the world keeps me full of energy. And watch Brazil in the World Cup, too."

What do we know about Pele's health?

Pele, whose real name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento, has been battling health problems in recent months.

Since having a tumor removed from his colon in September 2021, he has been regularly receiving hospital care.

Newspaper Folha de S.Paulo reported Saturday that Pele's chemotherapy was not working and that doctors had decided to put him on palliative care.

But his family members and hospital staff have so far not confirmed the information.

ESPN Brasil reported Wednesday that Pele was taken to the hospital because of a "general swelling."

An all-time soccer great

Pele, who played for Brazil and club sides Santos and New York Cosmos as a striker, is considered one of the greatest football players of all time.

He helped Brazil win the World Cup thrice — in 1958, 1962 and 1970.

He is the Brazilian team's all-time top goal scorer, with 77 goals in 92 games.

Fans from around the world have sent him messages of support.

Buildings in Qatar, which is hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup, have also displayed messages of support wishing him a speedy recovery. 

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