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Pele wins smallest act of 2021 on goal claim

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Brazilian icon Pelé is a legend in the game and one of the few players who can truly claim to be called “the greatest of all time”.

But the 80-year-old has sadly presented himself as biased for a bit of pettiness after being outplayed this weekend by Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo officially scored more goals than Pelé | Soccrates Images / Getty Images

Pele has scored a staggering 757 official career goals for Santos, New York Cosmos and Brazil during a groundbreaking 21-year career that saw him win three World Cups, the first at just 17, and set countless records. for his various astonishing exploits.

Ronaldo, however, rose to 758 goals at senior club and international level when he scored a brace for Juventus in his last appearance. Just over a week earlier, Pelé had seen his record of 643 goals for a club (Santos) shattered when Lionel Messi scored his 644th for Barcelona.

Pele himself has long maintained that he scored 1,283 goals. he technically done, but that tally is massively inflated by the goals of various exhibitions, touring games and friendlies which are not officially recognized and therefore cannot really be counted.

But in the wake of Messi breaking his single club record – which Santos denied on his behalf – Pelé reacted to claims that Ronaldo is a more prolific goalscorer by adding a new line to his Instagram bio.

In addition to “3x World Cup Champion” and “FIFA Football Player of the Century”, two accolades he deserves to shout, we now also read “All-time top scorer (1,283)”.

The honor of “all-time top scorer” truly belongs to Austrian-born Czech striker Josef Bican, whose official total is at least 805 (sketchy records in the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s mean that ‘it could actually be more). Even his unofficial goal tally is higher than Pelé’s at over 1,400.

Bican’s representatives (if he still has them) may well be in touch soon.

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