Sao Paulo – Brazilian football great Pele has been hospitalized in Sao Paolo for six days due to health problems that emerged during routine examinations, several local media announced on Monday.
According to the G1 news site, the 80-year-old has been kept at the Albert Einstein hospital since August 31.
That day, the three-time world champion posted a message on social media, saying that he was “in good health” and denying rumors that he had passed out.
“I went to the hospital for routine examinations that I had not been able to perform before because of the pandemic,” he explained in his August 31 post, without mentioning that he had remained in hospital.
Several Brazilian media have reported “health problems” discovered during these examinations, which prompted the hospital to keep him.
“As soon as the doctors have completed all the examinations, we will issue a statement,” a member of Pele’s entourage told AFP.
The Albert Einstein hospital said it “had no information” about Pele’s health or reports of his hospitalization.
Pele, whose real name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento, has been in poor health in recent years, and has had various spells in hospital, most recently in April 2019, in Paris, because of a severe urinary tract infection.
Back in Brazil, he had a kidney stone removed.
At the end of 2014, he suffered from a serious urinary tract infection and was placed in intensive care and on dialysis.
He also has hip problems and needed a walker to move around during his latest public appearances.
In February 2020, Pele reassured his fans about his mental health, after remarks by his son Edinho saying that he was “reclusive” and suffering “from a certain form of depression”.
The only player in history to win three World Cups (1958, 1962 and 1970), Pele is considered by many to be the greatest footballer of all time.