Pele 'depressed', struggles to leave home because of poor health

He never fully recovered from one of his hip operations


Football legend Pele is experiencing "a kind of depression", his son said in an interview, adding that Pele barely leaves home anymore because health problems have left him unable to walk normally.

"He's pretty fragile in terms of his mobility... and that makes him suffer a kind of depression," Edinho said of his father. Pele, 79, has been struggling with a series of health issues, including those of the kidney and his hip, in recent times.

"Just imagine, he's the 'King,' he was always such an imposing figure, and now he can't walk normally. He gets very shy, very embarrassed about that," his son said in an interview published on sports news site Pele, the pride of Brazilian football and the only player to win three World Cups (1958, 1962 and 1970), is considered by many to be the greatest footballer of all time. He has been in and out of hospital in recent years for various health issues. He never fully recovered from one of his hip operations, leaving him dependent on a walker, Edinho said.

With his health failing him, Pele's public appearances have become rare. In April last year, he travelled to Paris for a promotional appearance with French star Kylian Mbappe. But he fell ill shortly and had to be hospitalised for kidney problems. The Brazilian great, whose real name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento, has only one kidney, after a broken rib during a match forced doctors to remove the other.

-inputs from AFP