Feature: Sao Paulo Football Museum pays tribute to Pele for his 80th birthday

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SAO PAULO, Oct. 22 (Xinhua) -- Edson Arantes do Nascimento, the former Brazilian football player better known as "Pele", will turn 80 years old on Friday, and the Sao Paulo Football Museum has organized a special tribute to the three-time world champion.

The museum, located in Pacaembu Stadium, is presenting a thematic and interactive exhibition celebrating the "King of Soccer."

"Pele was the greatest athlete of the 20th century and he became a pop icon that helped build the image that the world has of Brazil," said Gringo Cardia, curator of the exhibition that opened last week, which is aimed mainly at children and young people.

FIFA, world football's governing body, named Pele, along with Diego Maradona, Player of the Century, the greatest football player of the 20th century, as he amazed the world for many years with his complex technique that helped lead the Brazilian team to victory in the World Cups in Sweden in 1958, Chile in 1962, and Mexico in 1970.

The exhibition dedicated to the "King of Soccer" contains photographic montages and animations including around 500 images that display important moments in his life, from his birth in Tres Coracoes in Minas Gerais state, to his time with the Brazilian soccer club Santos, to his development into an international sports icon.

As part of the series of tributes to Pele, urban artist Eduardo Kobra has created a mural in the Port of Santos to honor the former soccer star.

"I was inspired by the image of Pele playing for the Brazil national team, with the sweat on his shirt forming a heart on his chest," the artist told Xinhua.

The painting includes the word "Santos", referencing Pele's love for the club and the city that hosted him over the course of his 18-year career in the club.

Pele recently sent a message to the Sport TV channel in which he expressed his gratitude to be "healthy and lucid" for his 80th birthday. Enditem

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