Report: Soccer great Pelé 'had a good response to treatment for infection'

Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pelé, has not been moved to end-of-life care, which was previously reported, but is instead responding well to treatment at the Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein in São Paulo, according to the Associated Press.

The hospital also announced Saturday that Pelé's condition has not worsened over the past 24 hours, according to the New York Times' Tariq Panja.

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The Brazil soccer legend was admitted Tuesday, with what was reported to be general swelling and cardiac issues and to regulate his chemotherapy medication.

The 82-year-old has been receiving treatment for cancer since having surgery to remove a tumor from his colon in September 2021.

A medical report released Friday said Pelé had an adequate response to an antibiotic treatment for a respiratory infection and was in a stable condition “with general improvement in health status."

Brazilian fans showed their support for Pelé during the national team's 1-0 loss to Cameroon at the World Cup on Friday. They raised a banner with his image holding a soccer ball and the words "Pelé, Get well soon," along with a large flag. A building near the stadium also displayed an image of Pelé with get-well wishes.

Soccer Football - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 - Group G - Cameroon v Brazil - Lusail Stadium, Lusail, Qatar - December 2, 2022 Brazil fans display a banner with an image of former player Pele on it before the match REUTERS/Peter Cziborra
Brazil fans display a banner with an image of former player Pelé on it before Friday's match. (REUTERS/Peter Cziborra)

Pelé thanked fans via his Instagram account for their support. He wrote: “Friends, I am at the hospital making my monthly visit. It’s always nice to receive positive messages like this. Thanks to Qatar for this tribute, and to everyone who sends me good vibes!”

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Pelé, Brazil’s all-time leading scorer, is widely considered one the best soccer players in history. He began playing for soccer club Santos at 15 years old. Officially, Pelé scored 757 goals in 831 games from 1957 to 1977, although Santos maintain his record was closer to 1,000.

He owns World Cup history with three wins in 1958, 1962 and 1970. Currently, Kylian Mbappé is the only player to equal Pelé’s seven World Cup goals before the age of 24. He also had a message of support for the legend:

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