Pele: Brazilian legend, 80, undergoes surgery to remove tumor

Pelé, pictured in 2019, is Brazil’s top scorer and one of only four players to have scored in four different World Cup tournaments.

Brazilian legend Pelé underwent surgery to remove a tumor from his colon.

Following reports that the 80-year-old was hospitalized for six days, he posted on social networksexternal link Monday, claiming he had surgery to remove the “suspicious lesion” last Saturday.

“Fortunately, I am used to celebrating great victories by your side,” said the three-time World Cup winner.

“I will face this match with a smile on my face, a lot of optimism and joie de vivre.”

Five days ago, the former Santos and New York Cosmos striker denied reports that he had passed outexternal link and had “routine checkups”.

He now says the tumor in the right colon was discovered during testing last week.

“Thank goodness for feeling great and allowing Dr Fabio and Dr Miguel to take care of my health,” he added.

In February 2020, Pele’s son, Santos Edinho’s former goalkeeper, said his father had become ’embarrassed’ to leave his home because he cannot walk without help.

His health has been of concern in recent years and he underwent prostate surgery in 2015 after being admitted to hospital for the second time in six months. He was admitted for a urinary tract infection in 2019.

Pelé is Brazil’s all-time top scorer and one of only four players to score in four different World Cup tournaments.

According to the Guinness Book of Records, he has scored 1,279 goals in 1,363 appearances during his career, including 77 goals in 91 international appearances for Brazil.

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