Jan 3, 2023 - World

Soccer legend Pelé laid to rest after thousands in Brazil bid final farewell

The coffin of the late soccer legend Pelé arrives at a cemetery in Santos, Brazil.

The coffin of the late Brazilian soccer star Pelé arrives at a cemetery in Santos, Brazil on Tuesday. Photo: Nelson Almeida/AFP via Getty Images

The late Brazilian soccer legend Pelé was laid to rest on Tuesday after hundreds of thousands of people paid tribute to him in the city where he played most of his career.

The big picture: Pelé, who died last week at the age of 82, is considered one of the greatest soccer players of all time. He won three FIFA World Cups during his international career — the most of any player.

  • He also won 10 league titles with his club team Santos in Brazil.

Details: According to his former club, some 230,000 mourners, including newly inaugurated Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, paid their respects at Vila Belmiro, Pelé's home stadium in the southeastern city of Santos during a 24-hour wake that began on Monday.

  • A funeral procession took place from the stadium on Tuesday, before arriving at a local cemetery for a private burial.
  • Huge crowds lined the streets of Santos, chanting and applauding as Pelé's coffin passed by.

What they're saying: "It's an irreparable loss for Brazil," Lula said at the wake on Tuesday, Reuters reported. "Pele, in addition to being the best soccer player in the world, was a humble, simple man."

  • FIFA president Gianni Infantino said "Pelé is eternal," per Reuters. He added that the organization has asked every country to name a stadium after Pelé.
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