The Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo, where Brazilian soccer legend Pele is being treated, announced, on Wednesday, that his cancerous condition had “worsened” and that he needed “greater care to treat kidney and heart failure.”
The “King” Pele, 82, was admitted to hospital on November 29 to re-evaluate his chemotherapy treatment after a colon tumor was discovered in September 2021.
“Pele is suffering from the development of an oncological disease and requires more comprehensive care to treat renal and heart failure,” the doctors said in a statement dealing with the health of the three-time world champion.
The Brazilian will remain in hospital “in a regular room, where he will receive the necessary care.”
A few minutes before the statement was published, two of Pele’s daughters, Kelly Nascimento and Flavia Arantes, announced via Instagram that their father would spend Christmas in the hospital. “It’s over in our house Christmas. We decided with the doctors, for various reasons, that it is better to stay here, with all the care.” Provided by our new family (from the Albert Hospital) Einstein!!”.
Pray for the king
The two young women have published several messages on social media in recent weeks to reassure Pele fans around the world, after Brazilian media reported that his health had deteriorated.
“As always, we thank you for the affection you send us, from all parts of Brazil and from all parts of the world,” they added.
On Sunday, Kelly published a picture of her sister, Flavia, massaging her father’s left foot while he was watching the World Cup final on television. Without Pele’s face appearing in the photo.
Ranked by many as the greatest footballer of all time, Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pele, has suffered from increasingly poor health in recent years. He has been undergoing regular chemotherapy treatments since he was diagnosed with colon cancer last year. He also underwent surgery to remove the tumor in September 2021, and spent a month in the hospital.
Pele is the only player in the history of football to win the World Cup three times (1958, 1962 and 1970) and score more than 1,000 goals before retiring in 1977.
Support Neymar and congratulate Messi
Although Pele did not appear in public much, he was active on social networking sites, where he was regularly published during the Qatar World Cup, including a message of support and condolence to the Brazilian star Neymar after Selecao was eliminated from the tournament after losing to Croatia on penalties in the quarter-finals.
And he watched Neymar equal his number by scoring the 77th goal in the Brazil shirt, after he opened the scoring in the 105 + 1 minute of the first extra half against Croatia.
The Brazilian players also paid tribute to the living icon when they carried a banner after qualifying for the World Cup quarter-finals in Qatar at the expense of South Korea (4-1), showing his name and image celebrating his famous goal in the 1970 final against Italy when he achieved his third title.
Hours before the match, he sent them a message saying that he would follow them from the hospital, “I want to inspire you… I will encourage each and every one of you.”
After the final match, Pele congratulated Argentine world champion Lionel Messi on his “deserved” coronation against France, on penalties 4-2, after they tied 3-3 in regular and extra time.
“Congratulations to Argentina! Diego (Maradona, died on November 25, 2020) is definitely smiling now,” the King wrote on his Instagram page.
Pele has received many messages of support since his admission to the hospital, especially from French striker Kylian Mbappe, the best scorer in the Qatar World Cup (8 goals), who called for “praying for the king.”
Pele appeared in public for the last time alongside the French Paris Saint-Germain striker, in April 2019 in Paris, during a promotional event with a joint sponsor.
The Brazilian was admitted to the American Hospital in Neuilly (the western suburb of Paris) for a severe urinary tract infection, before he went directly to the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo upon his return to his country.
At the end of 2014, Pele suffered from a serious urinary tract infection and was admitted to intensive care and dialysis.