Brazil football legend Pelé, who has been hospitalised for three days suffering from a urinary infection, reached out to his fans via social media Thursday to say he’s “doing fine”. The Albert Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo said earlier that his condition had “improved” and that the 74-year-old — widely regarded as the greatest player of all time — was receiving renal treatment. But contrary to the hospital’s assertion that he was in intensive care, Pelé — whose real name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento — said he had simply been moved to another room for increased privacy.
I want to take this opportunity to let you know that I am doing fine. I am blessed to receive your love and support, and thank God this is nothing serious … While I appreciate all the visitors that came to see me, I really need to continue my treatment and recovery in peace.
Pelé, in a post published on his Facebook page and on his Twitter account (@Pele)
Pelé said he would spend the upcoming holidays with family and looked forward to beginning 2015 “with renewed health”, adding he had “many international trips already planned”. Pelé’s agent Jose Fornos said that the star was tired after receiving too many visits, and added that his treatment “could go on for eight days”. Nicknamed O Rei (The King), Pelé was born in a humble home in the city of Tres Coracoes, but is considered by many as the greatest footballer in history with his exploits for Brazil and a career which saw him score 1,281 goals in 1,363 games. He scored 77 goals in 91 games for his country and won his first World Cup aged just 17, scoring twice in the 1958 final win over hosts Sweden.
What we all hope is that he recovers soon, as quickly as possible, so that he can return to our group. It is not only us, his closest friends, who need him. Everyone does.
Veteran player Jonas Eduardo Américo (Edu), who played with Pelé at Santos and in the Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup