The debate has raged for decades who the greatest soccer player of all-time is. But nearly all polls will show a close race between two men: Pele and Diego Maradona.
In the wake of Maradona’s passing today, Pele has released a statement on the legendary player. Taking to Twitter, the three-time World Cup champion lamented losing a friend as the world lost Maradona.
“What sad news. I lost a great friend and the world lost a legend,” Pele wrote, translated from Portuguese via Google Translate. “There is still much to be said, but for now, may God give strength to family members. One day, I hope we can play ball together in the sky.”
Pele’s soccer days were behind him when Maradona burst onto the scene in the late 1970s. Fans have long wondered who the better player was and what would have happened if the Brazilian and Argentine legends ever went head-to-head.
Que notícia triste. Eu perdi um grande amigo e o mundo perdeu uma lenda. Ainda há muito a ser dito, mas por agora, que Deus dê força para os familiares. Um dia, eu espero que possamos jogar bola juntos no céu. pic.twitter.com/6Li76HTikA
— Pelé (@Pele) November 25, 2020
Pele and Diego Maradona were jointly named the FIFA Player of the Century in 2000. The two combined to win four World Cups, two World Cup Golden Ball awards, dozens of trophies for club and country, and over 900 goals scored between them.
Among diehard soccer fans, Pele and Maradona are No.s 1 and 2 as the greatest players of all-time. The only disagreement is usually the order.
Who do you think is the greatest soccer player of all-time: Pele or Diego Maradona?