Do you know who Edson Arantes do Nascimento is? I thought so. Well,what if I told you that Edson Arantes is also known as Pele…..your first thought must have been ‘Oh really’
Pele is definitely Brazil’s national treasure and he has proven why.It all began from humble beginnings,back when he could not afford soccer boots or even a soccer ball.
Pele was born in 1940 in a town called Tres Coracoes to a soccer player named Dondinho and his wife Celeste.Growing up in poverty, his parents could not afford to buy him a soccer ball, instead his father hand made a ball,made out of a sock with stuffed rags in it.Pele played in the streets barefeet,but that did not seem to bother him.
At fourth grade, he dropped out of school for good because he was expelled by the principal,who caught him playing soccer on a school day.Thereafter, he decided to take a job as a cobbler’s apprentice for $2 a day.At the age of 11, he was discovered by Waldemar De Brito who took him under his wing and trained him in secret.By the time he turned 12 years,De Brito secured a spot for him in a local junior club.And by joining the club, he was able to own his first soccer uniform.His friends gave him the nick name Pele,which at first he hated because he thought it was an insult, but he later embraced it.
After several rejections from major clubs, he managed to join Santos Football club,and won nine Sao Paolo league championships.Pele made his international debut at the age of sixteen,and in 1958,he played his first World Cup tournament.Brazil won the World Cup that year having defeated Sweden 5-2,with Pele’s name on the score sheet with two goals.He became the first person to ever play on three World Cup championships.
However, in 1974, he announced his retirement,but in 1975,he came out of retirement and joined the New York Cosmos for three years.During his tenure with the Cosmos,he led the club to the league championship in 1977. He played his final game in October 1977,in an exhibition match between Cosmos and his former club, Santos.He played for Cosmos during the first half and the latter club,in the second half.By the end of his active soccer career, Pele had scored 1,280 goals in 1,362 matches.
Even after retirement, Pele continues to remain active in many professional arenas.In 1978,he was the recipient of the International Peace Award.In 1994,he become the sports minister of Brazil.He still continues to do great things.
Growing up as a kid, he faced several challenges,but he never let that deter his dreams.If anything, the challenges were a blessing in disguise. As a young boy, he knew what he wanted to be and he worked hard to achieve that. The challenges gave him extra motivation to keep moving on and working hard.He put a lot of time in crafting his skills and used any opportunity that came his way to seize the moment.
As Pele says “Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do”
Photo credit: torcedores.com/ via google.com
Photo credit: sportas.com via google.com