“ETERNAL” Brazil legend Pele has been honoured with an infinity symbol by the South American country’s football chief in a touching tribute.
Three-time World Cup winner Pele died on Thursday aged 82 after a long battle with cancer.
He had been receiving treatment for a tumour in his colon but stopped responding to care.
Pele died with his family by his side and holding his hand.
His funeral will take place next Monday and Tuesday, and his coffin will be placed on boyhood club Santos’ pitch, where members of the public will be able to pay their respects.
Pele’s coffin will then be paraded past his mother’s house before ending up at Memorial Necropole Ecumenica.
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The football icon’s resting place will be in a unique “vertical cemetery” in a 14-floor building which includes 14,000 vaults, a waterfall and a car museum.
The Brazilian Football Confederation have also announced an official mourning of seven days, and Pele has been honoured with an infinity symbol.
CBF president Ednaldo Rodrigues said in a touching tribute: “I am deeply moved by Pele’s departure.
“The CBF will pay all possible tributes to the greatest athlete of all time.
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“Pele is eternal and we will always work to preserve his history and perpetuate his legacy.
“I still remember today the emotion of seeing Pele in action in Ilheus when the city’s national team faced Santos in 1967.
“I was only 13 years old and I was impacted. He scored one of the goals.
“Two years later, I traveled to Salvador to watch his 1,000th goal, which ended up not happening.
“Nildo took the goal almost on the line.
“Practically the entire Fonte Nova and I booed the Bahia defender.
“Three days later, the King scored his 1,000th goal in Rio against Vasco.”
Pele featured 113 times for Brazil, and is there all-time top scorer, tied with current star Neymar on 77.
He won three World Cups in 1958, 1962 and 1970.
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