This Day in History: 2022-10-20

Nr. 326


Pelé started his professional career as he meant to carry on – with a goal. Aged only 15, five feet tall and replacing the rested Del Vecchio, Pelé scored on his debut for Santos against Corinthians. In a sustained run in the first team he scored 15 goals in 11 games that season. He spent 18 years with Santos, resisting overtures from big European clubs to stay in Brazil, only leaving as his career was winding down to play in the MLS. Throughout his career he hit the net an amazing 1,283 times in 1,365 appearances but of his first professional goal Pelé said: «It was enough to keep me walking on air for a few days».
Brazil’s Pelé follows up as the ball flies loose during his early years at Santos, the club where he established his reputation as a world-beater.