Pele’s coffin arrives at Santos stadium for legend’s funeral as fans queue up in thousands to pay respects

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The coffin of the Brazilian soccer icon Pele arrived at the house of Saints the Monday before his funeral.

Last week, the three-time World Cup winner died at the age of 82 after a long battle with colon cancer.

Fans began lining up to enter the Vila Belmiro Stadium, which has a capacity of 16,000, in the early hours of the morning.

The venue, just outside Sao Paulo, is the home of Santos, for whom Pelé scored a large part of his more than 1,000 career goals.

The legend’s coffin arrived Monday morning and was placed under a large canopy, under which his loved ones will sit for the open-casket funeral.

A large screen has been installed on one side of the stadium that reads ‘King Pelé’ along with an illustration of the Brazilian.

Pelé’s final burial place will be a nearby cemetery with that ceremony scheduled for Tuesday, after his coffin is paraded through the city streets after the funeral.

REUTERS

The ‘vertical cemetery’ overlooking the Vila Belmiro Stadium is 14 stories high and will be located on the ninth floor, which overlooks the pitch.

BrazilThe president of , Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, is among the dignitaries expected to attend the funeral. .

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