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Brazil legend Pele will visit India after a span of 38 years in October 2015.
Pele who is arguably the greatest footballer of all time had previously visited India in 1977 along with USA side New York Cosmos. They played a friendly match against Indian football and Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan which ended in a 2-2 draw.
Pele is due to visit Delhi during that time as he accepted an invitation to attend the final of the 56th edition of the Subroto Cup as its chief guest.
Speaking about his return to India the legend said: “I am excited to come to India. It is a very special country. I remember I played in Kolkata in 1977 with my team New York Cosmos. Thank you for the invitation to be your guest.
“I look forward to the meeting with the young generation of India. See you in Delhi.”
The 2015 edition of Subroto Cup will be held from September 11 to October 16 and will see the participation of over 100 school teams from India and across the world. The matches will be played in Under-14 (boys) and Under-17 (boys and girls) categories.
In this edition of the competition, Pele’s childhood club Santos FC will also be participating in the tournament.
Air Marshall M.K Malik said: “It gives me immense pleasure to announce that Pele will be visiting India after a gap of 38 years for the final of the Subroto Cup. We are delighted to have his presence.”
Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha said: “All this initiative was made by the Subroto Mukherjee Sports Education Society in association with its football consultancy partner Libero Sports India, who shall also be working with various other stakeholders to ensure that Indian Football is able to gain as much as possible from the experiences of Pelé.”
In Kolkata, Pele would be coming here as a guest of honour for Atletico de Kolkata’s first home game in ISL season 2 on October 13, according to a press release.
Atletico de Kolkata co-owner Sourav Ganguly, Kerala Blasters owner Sachin Tendulkar will also be present at the Stadium alongside the maestro himself. Pele’s presence alongside them will light up the Salt Lake Stadium.
Pele, along with Ganguly, will also deliver a keynote address at the NSHM Knowledge Campus before attending an auction to raise money for West Bengal Relief Fund.
A message from the legend himself which was uploaded by Delhi Dynamos is given below
Pelé, the Pearl of Football, is coming to Delhi for the Subroto Cup Football Tournament! We at #DelhiDynamos are honoured to be associated with the grandest youth football tournament in the country and strongly believe that one day we will see Indian footballers playing at the highest level. Jai Hind!
Posted by Delhi Dynamos on Monday, 7 September 2015