Why did Pele never play in European soccer leagues? A story that reached politics
With the exception of the "black jewel," Pele, who died Thursday at 82, all football legends played in European clubs, from Brazilian Ronaldo to Argentine Diego Maradona. It was remarkable in Pele's sports career, which spanned between 1956 and 1977, that he never played for a European club, yet he managed to break numbers and reach the throne of the ball until he was called the "King of Football." Therefore, this question has always preoccupied the minds of many: How can a player who is the greatest in history, from the point of view of many, not play in Europe, where clubs for this sport thrive?
Negotiations without result
But that's not all, as some clubs tried to win Pele's services, but the negotiations between the two sides did not reach a conclusion, especially after the 1958 and 1962 World Cups, when Pele won the two tournaments with the "samba." European media say that clubs such as England's Manchester United, Spain's Valencia, and Germany's Bayern Munich have tried to attract him. Still, the most hesitant name in this field is the royal club: Real Madrid. The late Pele was quoted as saying, "There were many times when I came close to signing an agreement with Real Madrid, and once again it almost happened with Napoli in Italy." He added, "It is not regrettable because I was at Santos, and the club was a great strength at that time."
Italian clubs And the star
who won the World Cup three times, continued, "I did not play outside Brazil because I was very happy in Santos, as I spent the best 15-20 years there." He pointed out that "there were many proposals to play in the ranks of clubs, not only Real Madrid, but I was comfortable at Santos." Like Napoli, Pele was close to moving to other Italian clubs, such as Juventus and Inter Milan.
In 2018, the late striker said, while congratulating Cristiano Ronaldo when he moved from Real Madrid to Juventus, that he almost wore the old lady's shirt. And he told the story that the president of the Italian company "Fiat" offered the president of Santos in 1961 a million dollars in order to join Juventus, but the matter did not lead to anything in the end.