Pelé, the 82-year-old Brazilian soccer legend, is surrounded by family at his hospital bedside over the Christmas weekend as his health deteriorates.
His children have sent heartfelt condolences and photos of their father as they spend Christmas at the Albert Einstein Israelite Hospital in So Paulo.
Pelé’s daughter, Kely Nascimento, uploaded a photo of herself cuddling her father in the hospital on Friday, while his granddaughter, Sofia, is also in the same room. “We continue to be here in struggle and in faith,” she captioned the shot. “Another night together.”
🚨AGORA: Kely Nascimento, filha de Pelé, pública foto com o pai no hospital e tranquiliza: “Seguimos aqui, na luta e na fé”. pic.twitter.com/xfcEN1sxU7
— CHOQUEI (@choquei) December 24, 2022
Nascimento released a video late on Christmas Eve in which the legendary player is seen resting in bed, his family presenting him with a smartphone while someone is on the phone with him.
Pelé, the King of soccer, saying goodbye to his relatives and friends. Waiting for the final hour Stunning images !! Movements continue around Vila Belmiro, which awaits the star for his last move. pic.twitter.com/uLiIQ22u1e
— Isto Não É Podcast (@IstoNaoEPodCast) December 24, 2022
Edinho, Pele’s son, joined his sisters Flavia and Kely on Saturday amid fears about their father’s health.
Edinho is seen grasping his father’s hand in a snap uploaded on his own Instagram account. “Father…my strength is yours,” he wrote with the post.
“Pa, mi fuerza es tuya” escribió Edinho, hijo de Pelé, desde el hospital. pic.twitter.com/SfXxURttfX
— SportsCenter (@SC_ESPN) December 24, 2022
Pelé was brought to the hospital on November 29th for a respiratory infection and to have a “re-evaluation of the chemotherapy treatment for colon cancer detected in September 2021,” according to a hospital statement at the time.
Pelé’s colon cancer has worsened, according to a fresh statement released on Wednesday. As a result, he requires “increased care due to renal and cardiac dysfunctions.”
“Our Christmas at home has been postponed,” wrote Kely Nascimento at the time. “We concluded with the physicians that it would be best for us to stay here, with all the care that this new family—Einstein—provides!”
Pelé (real name Edson Arantes do Nascimento) is a Brazilian football legend.
He had a long football career that lasted twenty-four years, from 1953 to 1977. He also represented Brazil in four World Cups, winning three of them in 1958, 1962, and 1970.
Pelé served as Brazil’s Minister of Sports from 1995 to 1998 after retiring from the sport. Pelé and Maradona shared the FIFA Player of the Century award in December 2000.
Pelé was named the “World’s Best and Most Successful Top Division Goal Scorer of All Time” by IFFHS the same year.
The Brazilian legend was included in the Guinness World Records in 2017 for having the most career goals scored in football.