• Sports - Football
  • Updated: January 05, 2023

Why I didn't Attend Pele's Funeral – Rivaldo

Why I didn't Attend Pele's Funeral – Rivaldo

Rivaldo, a former Brazilian footballer, has opened up on his noticeable absence at the funeral of Brazilian icon, Pele.

The Barcelona legend was one of the prominent figures – including Zico, Romario, Ronaldo, Kaka and Ronaldinho –  who took the flak for not paying their last respect to the three-time world cup winner who died following a battle with colon cancer.

“Even if I were in Brazil, I'm not sure if I would go to the wake even though I know that Pele was the best of all time," he said.

"I don't like paying homage at this time, I'm not against anyone who wants to do it. 

Pele's funeral

"I met Pele, I had several conversations with him and I had the opportunity to honour him in life.

"I showed my affection and admiration for him at every moment and he always thanked me for it.

"No one will change the respect and admiration I had and continue to have for him despite not going to the wake.

"The best tribute is in life and this I did and I have a very clear conscience.”

Pele was laid to rest in Santos on January 3, after more than 230,000 people were said to have gathered to see the procession of the former Santos FC star's coffin through the busy city.

'The King' was buried in the Ecumenical Memorial Necropolis cemetery overlooking the Santos stadium.

There was an observance of three days of national mourning in Brazil following his death, as 230,000 people went to view his open casket in the 16,000-seater stadium where he lay in state for 24 hours.

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