Born Edson Arantes do Nascimento in 23 October 1940, in Três Corações, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
In 1956, de Brito took Pelé to Santos, an industrial and port city located near São Paulo, to try out for professional club Santos FC, telling the directors at Santos that the 15-year-old would be "the greatest football player in the world."
He made his senior team debut on 7 September 1956 at the age of 15 against Corinthians Santo Andre and had an impressive performance in a 7–1 victory, scoring the first goal in his prolific career during the match.
Pelé's first international match was a 2–1 defeat against Argentina on 7 July 1957 at the Maracanã.
On 29 June 1958, Pelé became the youngest player to play in a World Cup final match at 17 years and 249 days. He scored two goals in that final as Brazil beat Sweden 5–2 in Stockholm, the capital.
When the 1962 World Cup started, Pelé was the best rated player in the world. In the first match of the 1962 World Cup in Chile, against Mexico, Pelé assisted the first goal and then scored the second one, after a run past four defenders, to go up 2–0. He injured himself in the next game while attempting a long-range shot against Czechoslovakia. This would keep him out of the rest of the tournament.
Pele won World Cup 1970 against Italy 4-1
Pelé's last international match was on 18 July 1971 against Yugoslavia in Rio de Janeiro.
Pelé retired from Brazilian club football although he continued to occasionally play for Santos in official competitive matches. Two years later, he came out of semi-retirement to sign with the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League (NASL) for the 1975 season.
On 1 October 1977, Pelé closed out his career in an exhibition match between the Cosmos and Santos.
FIFA Player of the Century was a one-off award created by FIFA to decide the greatest football playerof the 20th century, announced at the annual FIFA World gala, held in Rome on 11 December 2000. Diego Maradona and Pelé were joint winners of the award.