Soccer great Pelé expresses support for peaceful protests in Brazil
Brazil’s soccer legend, Pelé, said in a television interview that he supports the protests going on in his country as long as they are peaceful, reports the Associated Press. Demonstrations erupted in cities throughout the country, as Brazilians protest against the government’s inefficient and corrupt activities, particularly pertaining to preparations for the 2014 World Cup. In Forteleza, 15,000 protesters clashed with police before Brazil’s game with Mexico during the Confederations Cup, hindering fans’ efforts to get into the stadium.
Pelé, regarded by some as the best player of all time, said people should only “think about the national team,” at one point during the interview which created a social media frenzy of Brazilians mocking his comments.
From the Associated Press report:
Pelé had expressed support for the nationwide protests in the same interview, but only the part in which he told Brazilians to “forget about this mess that is happening in Brazil” went viral.
He later released a statement reiterating his support of the protests for better public services, as long as they’re non-violent demonstrations.
Pelé, a member of the national team from 1957 to 1971, is the all-time leading scorer and has been a part of three World Cup teams (1958, 1962, 1970).