Sao Paulo (AFP) – Brazilian football legend Pele was released from a month-long hospital stay Thursday after having surgery for a colon tumor, but will continue undergoing chemotherapy, his medical team said.
Pele, 80, had been receiving treatment at Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo since August 31, after a suspected tumor was detected during routine tests.
Pele, who underwent surgery on September 4, is in “stable” condition, doctors said.
The hospital gave no further details on Pele’s chemotherapy, which is typically used in cancer patients.
“I am so happy to be back at home,” Pele said in a statement on Facebook.
“I want to thank the entire Albert Einstein Hospital team, who made my stay a pleasant one, with a humane and very affectionate welcome. Thanks also to all of you, who from afar, make my life complete with so many messages of love.”
Considered by many the greatest footballer of all time, Edson Arantes do Nascimento — Pele’s real name — has been in poor health in recent years, and has had various stints in the hospital.
The only player in history to win three World Cups (1958, 1962 and 1970), he burst onto the global stage at just 17 with dazzling goals, including two in the final against hosts Sweden, as Brazil won the World Cup for the first time in 1958.
“O Rei” (The King) went on to have one of the most storied careers in sport, scoring more than 1,000 goals before retiring in 1977.
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