MADRID, Dec. 11 (.) –
The president of the South American Football Confederation (Conmebol), the Paraguayan Alejandro Domínguez, has proposed that the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) exchange three of the five champion stars on his shirt for hearts as a tribute to the place of birth and the three World Cups won by Pelé, admitted for days in a hospital in Sao Paulo.
“Pelé was born in a town in Minas Gerais called Tres Corazones -‘Três Corações’-, and coincidentally ‘O Rei’ Pelé is the only star to have won three World Cups. Our proposal, so that Pelé always lives in the jersey , not only for Brazilians, but for all of us who love football, Brazil being the only five-time champion in the world, is that it exchange three of its stars for three hearts in homage to ‘O Rei'”, he declared at an event held in Doha to send encouragement to the former soccer player.
Edson Arantes do Nascimento ‘Pelé’, 82, was admitted to the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo (Brazil) at the end of November to be treated for a respiratory infection. ‘O Rei’, world champion in 1958, 1962 and 1970, continues to receive chemotherapy treatment after a colon tumor that was removed in September last year.
“If there is something that he did, it was to demonstrate the ‘beautiful game’, and not only for his particular magic, but for making that football be played like that as a team. It seems fair to us that, now that he is fighting and fighting for his game, Let’s make this recognition and propose to the CBF that they replace three stars out of five with three hearts, a tribute to where Pelé was born, where charm and football were born”, added Domínguez.
Finally, the Conmebol chief executive sent all his “love” and his “best wishes for a speedy recovery” to the Brazilian star. “He is a star who already lives forever in each of our hearts. Strength and long life to ‘O Rei'”, he concluded.