Brazil legend Pele, 80, leaves hospital after recovering from an operation to remove a tumour from his colon and will now undergo chemotherapy as star says he’s ‘so happy’ to be home

  • Brazil legend Pele has been discharged from hospital after nearly a month
  • The World Cup winner had an operation to remove a tumour from his colon
  • Pele said he was ‘so happy’ to be returning home and thanked hospital staff
  • The 80-year-old will now undergo chemotherapy as he continues his recovery 

Brazilian legend Pele has left hospital after recovering from an operation to remove a tumour from his colon and will now undergo chemotherapy. 

Pele had been hospitalised for nearly a month after being omitted for routine exams before undergoing a the operation to remove the tumor on September 4.

He was in and out of the Albert Einstein Hospital’s intensive care unit in the days after surgery, with social media posts from his family assuring fans he was recovering well.

Brazilian legend Pele has left hospital after recovering from an operation to remove a tumour

Pele’s daughter Kely has regularly given updates on her father’s health to fans and had said he was expecting to be discharged 

The hospital said on Thursday that he was stable and cleared in the morning to leave the hospital, but would ‘continue with chemotherapy.’

Pele left the hospital early in the evening and took to Instagram to thank the hospital staff who have treated him.

Alongside a picture of himself, his wife Marcia Aoki, doctors and nurses, Pele wrote: ‘When the path is difficult, celebrate each step of the journey. Focus on your happiness. 

‘It’s true that I can’t jump anymore, but these past few days, I’ve been punching the air more times than usual. I am so happy to be back at home.

‘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.’ 

The Santos, Brazil and New York Cosmos player, who turns 81 on October 23, is the only man to win three World Cups.

On Wednesday, his daughter Kely said that he was expected to be discharged.

‘Now that he’s stronger and leaving the hospital to continue recovering and treating himself at home, I’m going back home,’ she said on Instagram.

Pele has suffered a series of health issues over the last decade, particularly with his hip, and he cannot walk unaided.

His public appearances were already being cut before the COVID-19 pandemic and since then he has made few unnecessary forays outside his house near Santos.

His son Edinho said last year his father was depressed, something Pele later denied.

Legend Pele pictured with two medical staff at the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo

The global icon appeared cheery in the videos posted by Kely and her sister Flavia, singing, playing cards and smiling for their cameras.

Pele also posted a picture of himself punching the air earlier this month as he continued his recovery.

‘As you can see, I’m punching the air in celebration of every better day,’ Pele wrote on Instagram beside a photograph of him sitting in a hospital chair, watched by two medical staff.

‘A good mood is the best medicine and I have plenty of that. It couldn’t be different.

‘I have received so much affection that my heart is full of gratitude. Thanks to all the amazing staff at Albert Einstein Hospital!’ 

After winning the World Cup three times with Brazil, Pele remains an all-time great, and is his country’s top goalscorer with 77 goals in 92 matches.

The all-time great has won the World Cup three times and is his country’s leading goalscorer

He rose to international prominence when he helped Brazil win the 1958 World Cup as a 17-year-old, repeating the feat in 1962 and 1970.

Officially, he scored 757 goals during a glittering career – club Santos claim his tally was closer to 1,000 – leaving him behind only Cristiano Ronaldo and Josef Biscan on the all-time list.

Additionally, he was was only recently overtaken as the top international goalscorer in South American history, when Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick for Argentina in their World Cup qualifier last week.

Messi has recorded his huge tally in 153 caps for Argentina, while Pele netted his 77 goals in 92 official matches for Brazil.

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