HomeSportsHow Much Puma Paid Pelé During The 1970 FIFA World Cup?

    How Much Puma Paid Pelé During The 1970 FIFA World Cup?

    One of the most celebrated and decorated football players of our times Pelé is no more! The Brazilian player’s rigor and the rags to riches story is the tale for generations. Pelé was suffering from a respiratory infection. He was admitted to a hospital in São Paulo in November 2022. He was suffering from colon cancer which was worsening day by day in December 2022. The football icon was pronounced dead on December 29th, 2022 due to multiple organs failure.

    He was an extraordinaire. The GOAT had the sport in his genes. Pelé’s father was his mentor, who guided him to hone his skills which proved miraculous and put the Brazilian team on the map. The forward, in his career, has had many milestones and achievements. He was the youngest player in the history of football to net a goal. There were many stories that made headlines in the newspapers during his tenure. But, the most interesting tale is the one when he tied his shoelaces on the field wearing the Puma shoes during the 1970 FIFA World Cup. Why did it become a big deal?

    Read More: How Did Pelé Die?

    Why Did The Puma Story Become Such A Significant Part Of Pelé’s Career?

    Pelé's Puma deal was one of the significant live events during 1970 FIFA World Cup
    Pelé’s Puma deal was one of the significant live events during 1970 FIFA World Cup

    During World War I, the Dassler brothers forayed into the shoe-making business in Germany. It started in their parents’ house in Herzogenaurach. Rudolf and Adolf Dassler started a company together named ‘Geda’. During the 1936 Olympics, the two provided their shoes to the players in Berlin.

    But the collaboration lasted till the Second World War. The brothers split due to various disputes. Due to this, Rudolf went across the Aurach river to start his shoe-making. This gave rise to two shoe giants in the industry today—Puma and Adidas founded by Adolf Dassler and Rudolf Dassler, respectively.

    This started a rivalry in the footwear industry. The companies eye for teams in order to promote their brands and produce clout. Michael B. Jordan created a rage for the Nike sneakers. Likewise, in the late 20th Century, bid for teams and players who can promote their brands. When the rift between Adidas and Puma was created, it became a brutal business competition. It had vast economic consequences for them due to players’ preference for the brand influencing consumers’ choices. During the 70s decade, Pelé became a revered player in the football world. He played for the local Brazil club Santos FC.

    He has already created buzz becoming the youngest player to score a net at the age of 17. In 1970, during the FIFA World Cup, he was leading Brazil’s national team. During the finals, they played against the Italian team. The Summer Olympics in 1968 in Mexico already created a stir with the rivalries between the two companies. So, in order to avoid further financial losses, they struck an agreement called the “Pele Pact”. As per the pact, they will not sign Pelé and bid for him.

    Read More: Pelé Net Worth, Early Career, Philanthropy, And More

    The Football Icon Breached The Pact

    Puma breached the 'Pele Pact' and signed a deal with Pelé'
    Puma breached the ‘Pele Pact’ and signed a deal with Pelé’

    Pelé was unaware of the Adidas-Puma pact. It was the highly anticipated final between Italy and Brazil in June 1970. Pelé did something unusual which directed all the eyeballs in the stadium to him. Before the whistle for the game went, he interrupted and asked the referee to stop until he ties his shoelaces. He went down on his knees to tie them and it was a Puma sneaker that he was wearing. He breached the pact. But, the team won its third title during that game after which Pelé declared his retirement.

    But, it was all orchestrated. Puma was the one to breach the agreement. The shoe giant sent its representative Hans Henningsen to persuade the team to sign a deal with them. Hans, very smartly, used guerilla marketing. He asked everyone but Pelé about the deal creating curiosity in him. However, tired, he finally asked Pelé to sign a deal. They negotiated that the player will receive $25,000 for the World Cup and $100,000 for the next four years. So, along with Armin Dassler, Hans greenlit the deal and one of the most iconic marketing strategies got implemented on the football field.

    Read More: Who Is Amir Nasr-Azadani? Why Shakira Posted About Him During The FIFA 2022 World Cup Finals?

    Nishant Bhise
    Nishant Bhise
    Nishant Bhise is a Sub-Editor at FirstCuriosity. He has more than 2 years of experience in Entertainment content writing with the organization. Besides being a journalist and humanist, he loves cinema and intersectionality, basically everything that screams love, hope, and of course, Lady Gaga. Nishant loves and breathes popular culture, music, especially hip-hop and pop, and the royal family drama. Along with that, he takes great interest in the happenings in the technology world and politics. He is an LGBTQIA+ ally. Approach him with an apple juice to discuss Modern Family, Pose, and Schitt’s Creek.

    Trending on FC