Brazilian football legend Edson Arantes Donacimento “Pele” waves during the opening of the new stadium of Mexican Club Santos in Torreon, Mexico, on November 11, 2009. -AFP Photo

SAO PAULO: Legendary Brazilian footballer Pele was hospitalised on Tuesday, according to a spokesman at a Sao Paulo-based medical centre, who did not give any further information.

“Pele is in hospital here, but we are not able to provide any more details, as per the request of the family,” said a press officer for the Albert Einstein hospital, who did not reveal when the 72-year-old had been admitted.

Nicknamed “The King”, Edson Arantes do Nascimento, his birth name, reportedly underwent a hip operation, according to Brazilian daily Folha de Sao Paulo, citing a person from the patient's circle.

Pele is regarded as one of the greatest players ever to have graced the game, having won the World Cup on three occasions, 1958, 1962 and 1970, and scored 1,281 goals during his career.

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