Pele smiles for camera in first picture since coming out of intensive care

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Pele has joked that he is ready to play '90 minutes and extra-time' of football after he shared the picture of himself since leaving intensive care.

Pele is considered one of the finest footballers of all time alongside Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Diego Maradona.

The 80-year-old has been at the Alberto Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo since doctors removed a tumour from his colon earlier this month.

The suspected tumour was discovered during routine tests, and Pele had surgery to remove it.

And in an Instagram post on Tuesday, the Brazilian has confirmed that he has left the ICU.

"My friends, this is a message for each of you," the 80-year-old started in a brief statement on his Instagram page

"Don't think for a minute that I haven't read the thousands of loving messages I've received around here.

"Thank you very much to each one of you, who dedicated a minute of your day to send me positive energy.

"Love, love and love! I have already left the ICU, and I am in my room.

"I continue every day happier, with a lot of disposition to play 90 minutes, plus extra time. We will be together soon!"

Where do you think Pele ranks in the greatest of all time debate? Let us know in the comments section


Pele has claimed three World Cup victories over the course of his career.

And in his first, in 1958, the then 17-year-old set a whole host of records being the youngest player winner of a World Cup, the youngest goalscorer in a World Cup, and the youngest hat-trick at a World Cup.

The 80-year-old spent the majority of his career at Santos before closing out his career at the New York Cosmos.

According to FIFA, Pele scored 1,281 goals in 1,363 games.

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He remains Brazil's top goalscorer of all-time, with 77 goals in 90 appearances.

However, Neymar is hot on his heels with 69 goals, eight off Pele's all-time record.

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