Brazil legend Pele’s family members gathered at the Albert Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo on Saturday, where the 82-year-old, widely considered one of the greatest footballers of all time, has been since late November.
Doctors said this week that Pele’s cancer had advanced and that he requires care related to renal and cardiac dysfunction. His family said he would remain in the Sao Paulo hospital over the festive period.
Pele has received regular medical treatment since a tumor was removed from his colon in September last year.
“Almost all of them. Merry Christmas. Gratitude, love, togetherness, family,” his daughter Kely Nascimento wrote on Instagram with a picture of their family in the hospital.
“The essence of Christmas. We thank you all for all the love and light you send.”
Pele’s son Edinho, who played in goal for Santos in the 1990s, posted a picture of himself holding his father’s hand to Instagram on Saturday, with the caption, “Father… my strength is yours.”
The hospital has not mentioned any signs of Pele’s recent respiratory infection, which was aggravated by COVID-19.
Newspaper Folha de S.Paulo reported last weekend that Pele’s chemotherapy was not working and that doctors had decided to put him on palliative care. Pele’s family denied that report.
Information from the Associated Press was included in this report.