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Pele recovering well in Sao Paulo hospital after surgery to remove a suspected colon tumour

Brazil legend Pele is recovering well in Sao Paulo hospital after surgery to remove a suspected colon tumour as 80-year-old jokes ‘I’m looking forward to playing again’ in an Instagram post

  • Pele, 80, underwent surgery to remove a suspected colon tumour last weekend
  • He posted an Instagram update saying that he is feeling better with each day
  • The three-time World Cup winner is recovering in the Albert Einstein Hospital
  • Pele has struggled with various health issues during the past few years
  • Hip issues mean that he is often seen in public using a wheelchair or a walker  


Brazilian football legend Pele remains in intensive care but is recovering well after surgery to remove a suspected colon tumour.

The three-time World Cup winner, 80, has been receiving treatment at the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo since August 31.

The suspected tumour was detected during routine tests and Pele underwent surgery on it last Saturday.

Brazilian legend Pele is recovering in hospital after undergoing surgery on a colon tumour 

His medical team said he was ‘conscious, conversing actively and is maintaining normal vital signs.’

Pele posted an archive image of himself on his Instagram account on Friday night with a positive update on his health.

He wrote: ‘My friends, with each passing day I feel a little better. I’m looking forward to playing again, but I’m still going to recover for a few more days.

‘While I’m here, I take the opportunity to talk a lot with my family and to rest. Thanks again for all the loving messages. We’ll be together again soon!’

The Brazilian legend has struggled with his health and his mobility in recent years

The Brazilian legend has struggled with his health and his mobility in recent years 

The former Santos forward has struggled with health issues for several years. 

He underwent prostate surgery in 2015 after being admitted to hospital twice in the space of six months.

He was admitted again for a urinary infection in 2019. In February last year, his son Edinho said his father was reluctant to leave the house because he cannot walk unaided due to hip issues.

‘He is very sheepish, reclusive,’ he said. ‘Imagine, he’s the King, he was always such an imposing figure and today he can’t walk properly.

Pele won the World Cup with Brazil on three occasions - in 1958, 1962 and 1970 (pictured)

Pele won the World Cup with Brazil on three occasions – in 1958, 1962 and 1970 (pictured)

‘He’s embarrassed, he doesn’t want to go out, be seen, or do practically anything that involves leaving the house.’

Pele has used walkers and wheelchairs to get around in public appearances in recent years after a failed hip replacement in 2012.

He won the 1958, 1962 and 1970 World Cups with Brazil and remains their all-time leading goalscorer with 77 goals in 92 matches.

But earlier this week, Argentina’s Lionel Messi surpassed him as the leading South American men’s goalscorer in internationals after scoring three goals against Bolivia.

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