Manchester United and Manchester City’s players will be wearing black armbands on Saturday as a mark of respect to Pele who died at the age of 82 this week.
The news was announced on Thursday evening that the Brazilian legend had died in his home country. Pele had been suffering with colon cancer before his passing.
In a statement, the Premier League announced that they would be paying tribute across their matches this weekend. The statement read: “In tribute to Pele, Premier League clubs will remember his contribution to football during match week 18 (December 30 – January 1) by holding a minute’s applause prior to kick-offs.
Players and match officials will wear black armbands.” EFL clubs including the Greater Manchester teams Wigan Athletic, Bolton Wanderers, Salford City, Stockport County and Rochdale will also be wearing the black armbands as a mark of respect to Pele.
In his pre-match press conference ahead of the visit of Everton to the Etihad Stadium, Pep Guardiolagave a touching tribute to the former Santos man. “Football is football thanks to these types of people, players and human beings,” he said.
I think Neymar said it, before the No. 10 was just a number and after it became something special – every top player wants to wear it for their team. What he has done for football is there and always will remain.”
Elsewhere, FIFA’s flag at their headquarters in Zurich has been lowered to half-mast ‘as a symbol of mourning and respect.’ Meanwhile, in Brazil, Pele’s funeral is set to take place on Monday, January 2 with the country’s outgoing president Jair Bolsonaro declaring three days of national mourning.
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