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"That gave me a lot of confidence", Pelé said, "I knew then not to be afraid of whatever might come".
In 1956, de Brito took Pelé to Santos, an industrial and port city located near São Paulo, to try out for professional club Santos FC, telling the directors at Santos that the 15-year-old would be "the greatest football player in the world." Pelé was highly promoted in the local media as a future superstar.
In addition, indoor football allowed him to play with adults when he was about 14 years old.
After the 1962 World Cup, wealthy European clubs such as Real Madrid, Juventus and Manchester United tried to sign him, but the government of Brazil under President Jânio Quadros had declared Pelé an "official national treasure" the year before to prevent him from being transferred out of the country.
A prolific goalscorer, Pelé was known for his ability to strike powerful and accurate shots with both feet in addition to anticipating his opponents' movements on the field.
Early in his career, he played in a variety of attacking formations and would use his dribbling skills to go past opponents.
Throughout his career and in his retirement, Pelé received several individual and team awards for his performance in the field, his record-breaking achievements, and legacy in the sport.
Pelé was born on 23 October 1940, in Três Corações, Minas Gerais, Brazil, the son of Fluminense footballer Dondinho (born João Ramos do Nascimento) and Celeste Arantes. He received the nickname "Pelé" during his school days, when it is claimed he was given it because of his pronunciation of the name of his favorite player, local Vasco da Gama goalkeeper Bilé, which he misspoke but the more he complained the more it stuck.