Liverpool boss Juergen Klopp is convinced no one can be greater than Pele but what he marvelled at the most was the Brazilian football great’s humility despite being one of the most popular people on the planet.
Pele died on Thursday at the age of 82, and people from all walks of life mourned the death of the only man to win the World Cup three times as a player.
Klopp said he did not have even “0.01%” of the skills of Pele and described how he received a signed number 10 Brazil shirt on his birthday when he met the former striker and German great Franz Beckenbauer at the World Cup in 2006.
“Whatever anyone tells me in the future, Pele was the best. I will not forget that,” Klopp said.
“Both of them showed me that if you are the most famous person on the planet, you can still be a completely normal guy. That’s what I love the most, that’s what I took as a lesson, that’s something I will never forget.
“So because I’m Christian, this is not over. He will now play football in a wonderful stadium with fantastic players from the past.”
Leagues the world over will pay tribute to Pele during this weekend’s matches.
The Premier League, English Football League and Australia’s A-League said they would have a minute’s applause before games while Spain’s LaLiga and Italy’s Serie A said they would observe a minute’s silence ahead of games.
Premier League and EFL players will also wear black armbands.