On November 19, 1969, when a broadcast failure deprived the world of the second moon landing of the Apollo 12 Mission, the Brazilians missed nothing of an even more historic moment: Pelé's 1,000th goal.

If today the total number of goals, 1,283, claimed by Pelé is controversial - the latter counts goals scored both in official matches and in friendly matches - this day remains in the memory of Brazilians as a historical moment. 

For Brazil and its "King", this date could not be better chosen to achieve such a feat.

On that day, the people celebrate the national flag, instituted in 1889;

Pelé is celebrating his mother's birthday.

What better gift to offer than this "Gol Mil" full of pride for everyone?

Pride for the Brazilians to have the best player and certainly goalscorer of all time;

and for Maria Celeste Arantes to see her prodigy son enter into legend.

Fate sometimes doing things well, he prevented Santos' number 10 from crossing his Everest three days before in Salvador.

At the end of the match against Bahia, Pelé first saw his shot repelled by the crossbar, then his teammate Jair Bala took the ball in front of him to score. 

The ace !

The greatest artists, the most beautiful stages: no offense at the Fonte Nova stadium, it is the mythical Maracana, where Vasco de Gama receives for special occasions, which will be the scene of Pelé's thousandth goal.

More than 80,000 people in fusion

The cameras may film in black and white, but they work without problem, ready to immortalize the event, in the presence of 80,000 people in fusion.

And it's not the rain that will spoil the party.

It takes little in the first period for the "King" to score this goal.

It was first the Argentine goalkeeper Edgardo Andrada, who would be accused many years later of assassinations on behalf of his country's military junta (1976-1983), who diverted his shot from the outside of the foot.

It is then the crossbar, again her, who rejects her other attempt.

"You will not score today," his opponents throw at Pelé.

One of them, Renê, even scored against his camp, in front of the royal feet who already saw themselves as "millennials".

The end of the match is approaching when, in the 78th minute, Pelé gets a foul in the area.

He may later write in his autobiography that "the penalty is a loose way to score", never has his execution been so difficult to ensure.

Because around him, the effervescence is at its height and the "King" has no right to miss himself.

For a few minutes, several surreal scenes unfold.

Who see opponents in turn talking with the shooter, just to delay the deadline.

Who see Pelé himself consoling, hand on the shoulder, the author of the fault.

Who see, finally, a last Vasco player, ball in hand, frantically trampling the penalty spot, as if to create a bump if not to cast a spell.

>> To read also: the world pays tribute to the "king of football" Pelé

Flocked with the number 1000 on the back

Finally, the referee puts the ball on the chalk point and Pelé, calm, hands on his hips, finally rushes.

After a "paradinha" - a slowdown in his run at the last moment - he opens his foot and cheats on his right Andrada, who had read his shot well.


As he runs to grab the ball from the back of the net to kiss it, dozens of photographers, journalists and supporters are already invading the lawn to celebrate the hero.

Who ends up lifted by the crowd, with his precious ball still in his hands, while a swarm of microphones tries to collect his first words.

The moment is solemn only for Pelé's teammates, all lined up on the center line, who watch without moving the collective outpouring of joy, until Pelé pulls himself out of the mass and comes to jump into the arms of each one.

Again carried in triumph by his goalkeeper, Pelé ends up dropping a few words to the media, dedicating his goal "to the poor children of Brazil".

It was then that a jersey was given to him, flocked with the number 1,000 on the back.

He puts it on, before starting a lap of honor of about twenty minutes, under the incessant cheers of the Maracana.

At the end of what, it is necessary to finish this match well!

But the last ten minutes no longer matter to anyone.

Spectators are already leaving the stadium.

History has just been written under their starry eyes.

And the moon has nothing to do with it.

With AFP

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