Liverpool boss Juergen Klopp is convinced no one can be bigger than Pele, but what amazed him most was the Brazilian football great’s humility despite being one of the most popular people in the world.
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 didn’t even have “0.01%” of Pele’s skills and described how he received a signed number 10 Brazil shirt on his birthday when he met former striker and German great Franz Beckenbauer at the 2006 World Cup.
“No matter what anyone tells me in the future, Pele was the best. I won’t forget that,” said Klopp.
“They both showed me that if you are the most famous person in the world, you can still be a very normal man. That’s what I love most, that’s what I took as a lesson, that’s something I’ll never forget.
“So because I’m a Christian, this isn’t over yet. He will now play football in a beautiful stadium with fantastic players from the past.”
Competitions around the world will pay tribute to Pelé during this weekend’s games.
The Premier League, England Football League and Australia’s A-League said they would clap for a minute before games, while Spain’s LaLiga and Italy’s Serie A said they would observe a minute’s silence before games.
Premier League and EFL players will also wear black armbands.