It’s been almost a year since arguably the greatest soccer player of all time left us to play the sport in heaven. The name ‘Pele’ echoes all the three generations of fans especially those who love the game.
Pele, known for having 3 FIFA World Cups played his last World Cup match in the 1970 final against Italy. Though less celebrated, Pele ended his career as a player playing for the US-based club named New York Cosmos, which was long before the current MLS days.
In the last-ever game, New York Cosmos hosted the Brazilian club. Santos FC as 75,646 people booked their seats in the Giants Stadium. Pelé being Pele scored the 1,283rd and final goal of his career in that match. In the second half, Pele changed sides and played for the team that had brought him the most success at the club level, Santos.
On October 1, 1977, the legendary Pelé played the last match of his outstanding career – an exhibition between his two former clubs, the New York Cosmos and Santos, with Pelé playing one half for each side. #Pele pic.twitter.com/N5Lko9tEMe
— 70s Daily Dose (@70sDailyDose) October 1, 2022
Before the match, Pele was quoted saying-“I believe that love is the most important thing we can take from life because everything else passes,”. The official last match of the Brazilian legend came in the same year 1977 when the New York Cosmos won their second Soccer Bowl title after a a 2–1 win over the Seattle Sounders, a team that is currently in the MLS.
The Brazilian legend was also awarded the MVP that season which just goes to show how good the Brazilian was even during the later stages of his career.
A peek into Pele’s career before his retirement
Most people to this day believe that Pele is the top scorer of every competition he has played for as the record speaks for themselves but having retired a long time back the former Santos man was able to hold on to most of the records for a long time until the day of modern soccer.
For Santos Pele has scored 659 goals in 643 appearances in all competitions. For Cosmos he had 66 goals in 107 appearances and for Brazil he was the leading goal scorer with 77 goals in 92 appearances until Neymar broke it.
Edson Arantes do Nascimento PELÉ☢
🏅x3 – FIFA World Cup
🏅x1 – Taça do Atlântico
🏅x2 – Roca Cup
🏅x3 – Taça Oswaldo Cruz
🏅x1 – Copa Bernardo O’Higgins
🏅x6 – Campeonato Brasileiro Série A
🏅x2 – Copa Libertadores
🏅x2 – Intercontinental Cup
🏅x1 -… pic.twitter.com/LCHGyZsAz2
— Allen☯ (@afc_allen01) October 23, 2023
Pele has won the Brazilian League with Santos 6 times and the CONMEBOL Copa Libertadores twice in a row. With Cosmos, the Brazilian legend has won the soccer bowl twice but his most prized possession include the Three World Cups he won in 1958,1962 and 1970.
— NowMyNews (@NowMyNews) December 31, 2022
Pele is undoubtedly one of the most influential and important names in the history of soccer. Being the highest-paid athlete during his prime, the Brazilian had a net worth of around $100 million.
Barbara Smit in her book Sneaker Wars revealed that Pelé was paid $120,000 to just tie his shoes during the 1970 final and would even go on to earn $100,000 for the next four years.
Pele is an icon, to say the least, and he has left his mark in the world of soccer after his long battle with colon cancer. May his soul rest in peace and may he always be celebrated for the career he had.