Pele Biography

Pele is the almost undisputed greatest soccer player of all-time! His incredible dribbling, superb shooting, and understanding of the game made him an amazing sight on the field.


Pele was born on October 23, 1940 in Tres Coracoes, Brazil. He was given the name Edson Arantes Do Nascimento, but later took the name Pele.

He was raised in a family that already loved soccer. After all, his father was a soccer player himself (known as dondinho), though he was forced into an early retirement by a knee injury.

However, they were in poverty, and he couldn't even afford a soccer ball, so he and his friends would play in the street with stuffed socks!

He then managed to get into a tournament with a "shoeless team" where he was noticed by former soccer star, Waldemar de Brito.

After excelling on his youth teams, Pele was taken by de Brito to try out for the Sao Paulo major league squad where he was rejected.

Undeterred, de Brito then brought young Pele to the major Brazilian soccer club, Santos, where he was accepted at the age of 15.

He would go on to spend 20 years with this club.

Making it Big

The year after joining Santos, Pele became top scorer of the season as well as the youngest player to start in the Brazilian first division!

At the age of 17, Pele played in his first World Cup (1958). Pele stunned the world during this tournament.

He scored six goals, two of which were scored in the finals against Sweden, leading the Brazilian team to it's first World Cup title!

At such a young age Pele was already among the greatest players in the world!

Career Accomplishments

Pele went on to lead Brazil in two more World Cup wins and play in another on top of that. This made him the only player to win three world cups, and one of the few players to play in four different World Cups!

Also, he scored 1281 goals in 1363 matches over the course of his career, making him FIFA's most prolific scorer!

On top of that, he set a record of 12 goals scored in one world cup, a record that was recently broken by another Brazilian named Ronaldo

Those are some of Pele's biggest accomplishments, though they are by no means all that he did.

Career Ending

After his last World Cup, Pele went into a short lived retirement before coming out of it to play for the New York Cosmos, with a three year $7 million contract!

He said that he joined this team to bring an appreciation for soccer to the United States.



Pele retired as the greatest player in the world. He was a huge tribute to the sport and still supports and attends the World Cup tournaments to this day.



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