Pele - The legend 

Edson  Arantes do Nascimento. Such an unfamiliar name,  right? But you would definitely know him by the name Pele.  The most famous athlete of the last century.

Pele was born to a poor family in Brazil where he was forced to take up the job of a servant at a very young age due to poverty. But he showed exquisite skills in Football. His legs could move magically. 

How did Edson became Pele? His favourite footballer was Bile. Since he couldn't pronounce Bile properly, some friends nicknamed Edson as  Pele.  Thus Pele was born. Just the name, the footballer in him had to wait many more years before reaching the zenith of success. His otherworldly skills on the pitch  made him the most prominent and 

successful footballer of all time. In his prime, he transcended borders, politics and race—a man whose mere appearance resulted in a cease-fire of the Nigerian civil war in 1967 so that both sides could see him play. That was the impact Pele had on the minds of people.

His humble beginnings and hardwork make him a genuine down to earth individual. His greatest strength was his confidence and belief in himself. Pele quotes that success never comes the easy way. He explains, “I was ready to give up things, kids my age were normally doing. Instead, I spent a lot of time practicing and improving myskills.”

At 15, Pelé’s skills had improved enough that he made the 

Brazilian professional team Santos. He scored his first goal during a “friendly” match. The next year, 1957, Pelé started and starred for one of the best pro teams on the planet at the tender age of 16. He led the league in scoring and was quickly named to the Brazilian national team. Not many outside South America knew him, but the world was soon put on notice that the boy who would become known as the King of Soccer    had arrived. At 17, he was then the youngest player to ever appear in the World Cup ( 1958 FIFA) and he emains the youngest to appear in a final and score a goal. The secret formula behind his success, a simple but powerful statement " love what you do ".

Pele quotes that he was born to play football,  it was in his genes. A

lot of what Pelé could do simply can’t be taught. His inherent ball skills and quickness are the stuff of legend.  In Pele's own words  " the passion will give you the strength, discipline, the desire to work hard and the humility to understand you can always improve. Soccer is a sport that you can’t win without the rest of your team. You cannot win a tournament without a good strategy, discipline and perseverance. Apply that in your life, and you will become a winner.”

Thus he still works in various walks of life,  even at the age of 7, he's United Nations ambassador for ecology and the environment, he works closely with the largest pediatric hospital in Brazil and is an ambassador of prince Charles rainforest protection mission. But his soul being on soccer Pele reached out to children via his illustrated kids’ book  ‘For the Love of Soccer’! The story follows Pelé as a boy striving to become a great soccer player and a young  

fan determined to emulate his hero. He wanted to promote his sport, but he also hoped to fill young minds with life lessons involving hard work and perseverance.

Old age has never back him off from his philanthropic works. He's a hero who inspires a large section of people from low economic strata, any color, or with no background can achieve whatever they desire for, nothing Is impossible.  Shruthi Nair

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