Pele’s last words on Instagram were touching tributes to Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe

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Pele: Mirror’s Andy Lines visits the final resting place of football icon


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The late, great Pele paid tribute to fellow legends Lionel MessiKylian Mbappe and Diego Maradona in his final Instagram post.

The three-time World Cup winner passed away aged 82 at the end of December following a battle with cancer. His funeral started in Brazil on Monday – with his coffin lying in state – and will end with a parade through the streets of Santos the following day.

Pele became a global ambassador for football after hanging up his boots in 1977 and continued to be a positive voice until his death. His final Instagram post was made after after Argentina defeated France on penalties in the World Cup final on December 18.

“Today, football continues to tell its story, as always, in an enthralling way,” wrote Pele after Argentina’s victory. “Messi winning his first World Cup, as his trajectory deserved. My dear friend, Mbappe, scoring four goals [a hat-trick and a penalty] in a final.

“What a gift it was to watch this spectacle to the future of our sport. And I couldn’t fail to congratulate Morocco for the incredible campaign [reaching the semi-finals]. It’s great to see Africa shine. Congratulations Argentina! Certainly Diego is smiling now.”

Last month’s game is regarded as the greatest World Cup final of all time. Argentina were easing to victory after first-half goals from Messi and Angel Di Maria before a late brace from Mbappe sent the game into extra-time, where the drama continued.

Pele was a huge fan of superstar Kylian Mbappe

Pele was a huge fan of superstar Kylian Mbappe© Getty Images

Write your tribute to Pele in the comments below!

Messi restored Argentina’s lead, but Mbappe’s last-gasp spot kick forced a penalty shootout. The game was finally decided when Aurelien Tchouameni and Kinglsey Coman missed from 12 yards – handing Argentina their first World Cup since 1986.

It was also Argentina’s first triumph since Maradona captained them to victory 36-and-a-half years ago. The Napoli icon passed away in November 2020 and Pele was keen to pay tribute to his old friend in the final sentence of his final Instagram post.

Pele’s passing has left football in a state of mourning. Messi and Mbappe were among the first to pay tribute the Brazilian icon on social media, with the latter tweeting: “The king of football has left us but his legacy will never be forgotten. RIP KING.”

Pele paid tribute to Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi in his final Instagram post

Pele paid tribute to Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi in his final Instagram post© AFP/Getty Images

Neymar is regarded by many critics as the greatest Brazilian player of his generation and was keen to pay tribute to Pele after the sad news broke. “Before Pele, 10 was just a number,” he wrote on Instagram. “I’ve read this phrase somewhere, at some point in my life.

“But this sentence, beautiful, is incomplete. I would say before Pele football was just a sport. Pele has changed it all. He turned football into art, into entertainment He gave voice to the poor, to the blacks and especially: He gave visibility to Brazil.

“Soccer and Brazil have raised their status thanks to the King! He’s gone but his magic remains. Pele is FOREVER!!”

source:The Mirror

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