The world’s greatest ever, the Brazilian Pelé (Edson Arantes do Nascimento), who led the New York Cosmos to the NASL Soccer Bowl title in 1977, received the FIFA Ballon d’Or Prix d’Honneur for his lifetime achievement during the FIFA annual awards in Switzerland’s Zurich Kongresshaus on Monday.
The FIFA honor received by the current Cosmos Honorary President adds to his already vast collection of awards and trophies.
The only player to win three FIFA World Cup titles (Sweden 1958, Chile 1962, Mexico 1970), Pelé ended his international career after 14 years with the Brazilian national team scoring 77 goals in 92 games.
After 18 years (1956-1974) with local side Santos FC, where he won six Brazilian titles and two South American (Copa Libertadores) Championships, Pelé signed with the Cosmos in 1975 and played three NASL seasons scoring 31 goals with 25 assists in 56 games.
To conclude his professional career, Pelé scored six times and dished out four assists during the Cosmos playoffs run which led to the club claiming the Soccer Bowl ’77 over the Seattle Sounders.
After he retired from the game, Pelé was named FIFA Player of the Century and Athlete of the Century by the International Olympic Committee.
Photo from nasljerseys.com