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Category: Pelé

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Sports quiz of the week: Luka Modric, Deontay Wilder, Pelé and long hair

Who has ‘one skill’? Who bunked off? Who swung and missed?Deontay Wilder threw 430 punches in his fight against Tyson Fury. What percentage of them landed?6%17%29%51%Luka Modric won the Ballon d’Or on Monday night and became the first player other than…

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How the birth and death of the NASL changed soccer in America forever

This week marks the 50th anniversary of the North American Soccer League’s foundation. The competition’s influence can still be seen todayThe NASL was American soccer’s big bang, the league that ignited a soccer boom in the States and brought over to A…

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How Pele lit up soccer in America and a left a legacy fit for a king

Forty years ago this Sunday, more than 75,000 packed into Giants Stadium to see O Rei finish a glittering Cosmos career that helped ignite America’s soccer boom

Winning a World Cup is a steep enough challenge.

Pele had the gifts, and talented and remarkable team-mates, to accomplish that not once, not twice, but three times.

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How Pele lit up soccer in America and a left a legacy fit for a king

Forty years ago this Sunday, more than 75,000 packed into Giants Stadium to see O Rei finish a glittering Cosmos career that helped ignite America’s soccer boom

Winning a World Cup is a steep enough challenge.

Pele had the gifts, and talented and remarkable team-mates, to accomplish that not once, not twice, but three times.

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Chuck Blazer obituary

US football executive and former Fifa official found guilty of racketeering and money-laundering whose testimony blew open Fifa’s corruption scandal

On a bright May morning two years ago, the world was shocked by pictures of top officials of Fifa, the international football federation, being herded away from the luxury Hotel Baur au Lac in Zurich by Swiss police officers, sheltered from the waiting media by hotel staff holding up crisp white bedsheets. The early morning raid and arrests were based on indictments that followed an investigation by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation into corruption in football, an investigation built around the plea-bargained testimony of Chuck Blazer, who has died aged 72 after suffering from cancer.

Blazer, a portly figure with a Santa Claus beard and Harpo Marx haircut, worked his way up from the grassroots of US soccer into the very heart of power in world football. As executive vice-president of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF, or US Soccer), and then general secretary of Concacaf, the confederation governing football in North and Central America and the Caribbean, Blazer had, in the words of the former Major League Soccer commissioner Doug Logan “brought [US] soccer into the modern television age almost single-handedly”.

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Messi, Lahm and … Sidwell? How much would Pelé’s New York Cosmos cost today?

In the 1970s, the Cosmos created a team of stars, including Franz Beckenbauer and Carlos Alberto – and an equivalent team today would set you back plenty

In the 1970s, the New York Cosmos made soccer briefly fashionable in the United States, with global superstars Pelé, Franz Beckenbauer and Carlos Alberto leading a glittering team through a league that defied every convention of the international game.

How much would it cost to assemble an equivalent team today?

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Handcuffs, pitch invasions and fame: life as Pelé’s bodyguard in the 70s

Pedro Garay only stood 5ft 6in but he protected the world’s greatest player during his whirlwind career with the New York Cosmos

It was 1975, and in his wildest imagination, Pedro Garay never dreamed he would wind up in the middle of this wild, almost surreal scenario. There he was, draped over the greatest football player to ever walk the Earth, protecting him from a horde of pitch invaders.

The Cuban refugee was guarding American soccer’s most precious jewel at the time, the incomparable Pelé. Pelé’s shirt, shorts and sneakers had been ripped off by the over-zealous fans who had come to Boston’s Nickerson Field stadium to watch the New York Cosmos superstar in his first season in North American Soccer League game. “The fans were around the field like ants,” Garay said.

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World Cup final 1970: Brazil v Italy – as it happened

The minute-by-minute report of one the great finals featuring Carlos Alberto’s iconic goal, from the pages of And Gazza Misses The Final, a collection of World Cup MBMs by Rob Smyth and Scott Murray

Final, Azteca Stadium, Mexico City, Mexico, Sunday 21 June 1970

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World Cup final 1970: Brazil v Italy – as it happened

The minute-by-minute report of one the great finals featuring Carlos Alberto’s iconic goal, from the pages of And Gazza Misses The Final, a collection of World Cup MBMs by Rob Smyth and Scott Murray

Final, Azteca Stadium, Mexico City, Mexico, Sunday 21 June 1970

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Davis Cup dives, Pelé the movie star and Lewis Hamilton shocks a tiger | Classic YouTube

This week’s roundup also features a hat-trick of penalty saves, lucrative cricket-fan catches and a baffling backwards putt

1) It’s the semi-finals of the Davis Cup this weekend as Great Britain take on Argentina in Glasgow. Here is the visitors’ former stalwart Juan Mónaco wilting against the never-say-die attitude of Rafael Nadal, and here are the best shots of the 2015 tournament, featuring a quite ridiculous retrieve by Andy Murray – not unlike this one during an incredible match point in last year’s final. In the other semi, Croatia take on a France team featuring Gaël Monfils, who did this in the 2014 tournament and can dive with the best of them. One more thing: did you know a saltwater crocodile once conducted the Davis Cup draw?

2) What happens in rugby when one nine-year-old is bigger, quicker and stronger than the rest? Biff. What happens when you get a little too clever? Oops.

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Pelé will not attend Rio Olympics opening ceremony due to poor health

• ‘Only God is more important than my health,’ says football legend
• Brazil’s most famous sportsperson misses out on Rio event

Pelé says his poor health will keep him from lighting the Olympic cauldron at the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics.

In a statement on Friday, the Brazilian football legend said: “I’m not physically able to attend the opening of the Olympics.”

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Why not everyone remembers the 1966 World Cup as fondly as England | Simon Burnton

Fifty years ago England beat all-comers to win the World Cup gloriously on home soil – right? Not according to many teams who branded the tournament ‘a conspiracy against Latin America’ blighted by poor refereeing

On 23 July 1966 a full house at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires gathered for a performance of Aida. At the allotted time the lights dimmed, the chatter stopped and the conductor walked out and took his place in front of the orchestra. Upon seeing him, a different noise swept across the audience. The crowd started to boo. Some rose from their seats and jeered. There was only one thing wrong: the man holding the baton, John Pritchard, was English.

Earlier that day, some 7,000 miles away in Sheffield, nine-year-old John Blagden and his 12-year-old sister Jean waited outside the dressing rooms at Hillsborough in the hope of getting some autographs when the players from Uruguay and West Germany left the ground after their World Cup quarter-final. They had some success and were particularly delighted that a couple of the Uruguayan players took the trouble not just to sign their name but to write messages, an act of kindness particularly notable given that they had just lost 4-0. The only problem was, they couldn’t understand what the messages meant. It took two full days of searching before they found someone who could translate the Spanish scrawled in their autograph book. One message read: “The referee is a thief,” and the other: “German criminals stole the game from Uruguay.”

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Eddie Jones airport bag search the latest case of trouble in transit | Simon Burnton

The England rugby union head coach had his luggage searched by airport customs in Brisbane but was it just another example of sporting shenanigans?

Old-fashioned, Crazy Gang-era Wimbledon used to force their opponents to take cold showers and subject them to obnoxious music. At the Boston Celtics Red Auerbach – coach between 1950 and 1966 and so successful the NBA’s coach of the year award wasn’t just given to him, it was named after him – liked to make sure at least one of the away team’s toilets was blocked and overflowing. Last year St Mirren painted the visitors’ dressing room black in an effort to make them feel depressed before matches.

At Cambridge United John Beck used to lace his opponents’ half-time tea with salt. In 2013, the Portuguese team preparing for a vital World Cup play-off in Sweden were treated to a pre-dawn concert by the multi-platinum Scandinavian rapper and author of the official Swedish Euro 2008 song, Markoolio, staged in their hotel car park. These are all examples of the deliberate sabotage of a rival team’s preparations. And now, it seems, we can add another crime to the list: the mildly inconvenient bag search.

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Sports quiz of the week: Euro 2016, French Open and Pelé’s pricey prizes

This week’s quiz is counting the days until France meet Romania in Saint-Denis

Which of the Home Nations has gone unbeaten for over a year?

England

Wales

Scotland

Northern Ireland

Alastair Cook became the first English cricketer to reach 10,000 Test runs this week. Which Englishman has the second highest total, with 8,900?

Kevin Pietersen

David Gower

Graham Gooch

Alec Stewart

Zinedine Zidane is the seventh person to have won the European Cup as a player and a manager. Which of these football men has not achieved that double?

Giovanni Trapattoni

Johan Cruyff

Carlo Ancelotti

Kenny Dalglish

Which of these managerial appointment did not happen this week?

Garry Monk to Leeds United

Owen Coyle to Blackburn Rovers

Roberto Di Matteo to Aston Villa

Marco Materazzi to Watford

Pelé is auctioning off his vast collection of awards and football memorabilia. Which item is expected to earn the most – up to £420,000?

His 1958 World Cup medal

The ball with which he scored his 1,000th goal

His 1970 World Cup medal

The Jules Rimet replica trophy he was given in 1970

AFC Wimbledon will play in League One next season after their sixth promotion in their short history. When were the club formed?

1996

1999

2002

2005

Who said: ‘I can go from an obese fat pig to a ripped Adonis in 12 weeks. It’s unnecessary to keep in shape all year round. It only helps you if you want longevity’?

Tyson Fury

Ade Akinbiyi

Wes Morgan

Conor McGregor

Dominic Thiem, who faces Novak Djokovic in the French Open semi-finals, could become only the second player from which country to win the men’s singles at Roland Garros?

The Netherlands

Belgium

Austria

Luxembourg

Which country has the youngest squad at Euro 2016?

Italy

England

Wales

Northern Ireland

Who offered this advice to footballers going to Euro 2016: ‘Get yourself in a good state. Be fit. Be as strong as you can. Eat properly. Prepare properly. You’re playing international football. Control the bloody ball. Pass it to your mates and if you lose it, run back and run back like you care’?

Gary Neville

Vicente del Bosque

Roy Keane

Eric Cantona

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Pelé auctions off his entire football history

Fabled Brazilian No10 and three-times World Cup winner’s vast collection of awards and memorabilia could fetch up to £5m in London sale

Pelé, widely seen as the finest football player of all time, is auctioning off his entire collection of awards and memorabilia accumulated over six decades in the game.

Experts believe the “historic” event could become the biggest sports auction ever and fetch up to £5m in bids.

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Football stadiums then and now – interactive quiz, part three

Can you identify these 10 British football stadiums from historical photographs? Study the photos for clues, make your choice and watch as the image fades into a present-day photograph taken from the same perspectiveTake our first football stadium then…

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Pelé in Saõ Paulo hospital after back operation, say Brazilian media

• Albert Einstein hospital confirms 74-year-old is a patient
• Former Brazil star had prostate surgery at same hospital in May

Pelé has undergone surgery on his back in São Paulo, according to reports.

Mirtes Bogea, a press officer for the city’s Albert Einstein hospital, said she could only confirm that Pelé was a patient but Globo.com reported that he had had back surgery on Thursday.

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The Forgotten Story of … when Pelé and the Santos circus came to England

In the late 1950s Santos, with Pelé in their ranks, realised they had a method of printing money by sending the squad out on the road. And, for the next decade, they sent them to every corner of the globe

Probably the most frequent complaint about modern football is that it is concerned only with money, that it is less a game more a method of earning cash, ripped from its Corinthian roots and unrecognisable from what it once was. Of course that is true, but to suggest that football hasn’t always been full of those who can spot a quick buck is nonsense of the first water. What has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.

In the mid-1950s Santos were a decent, if not especially big, side. They had one regional title to their name, won in 1935 in the days before the national Campeonato Brasileiro had been established, but a group of talented homegrown players helped them claim a pair of Paulista crowns in 1955 and 1956. So by the time Pelé made his first-team debut in 1957, they were already something of a force, but his genius helped push them further and further, to another ten state titles, six national championships and two Copa Libertadores, including the treble in 1961.

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40 years on: how New York Cosmos lured Pelé to a football wasteland

Negotiations to bring the world’s most famous player to New York required thousands of miles of travel, countless lunches, several attorneys and some Belgian stationery

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Pelé backs Sepp Blatter’s re-election as Fifa president for fifth term

• ‘He’s a man who has been there for 25 years, you have to respect him’
• New York Cosmos to play Cuba in historic friendly on Tuesday
• Ex-Fifa vice president Jack Warner swallows Onion spoof

Brazil legend Pelé has welcomed the re-election of Sepp Blatter as Fifa president.

Blatter secured a fifth term in charge of football’s world governing body at Fifa’s annual congress in Zurich last week after seeing off the challenge of Jordan’s Prince Ali Bin al-Hussein.

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