Brazilian footballer Socrates dies
Former Brazil great Socrates, who captained Brazil at the 1982 World Cup, has died. He was 57.
Known for his elegant style on the field and his deep involvement with Brazilian politics, Socrates died of septic shock resulting from an intestinal infection, according to a statement by the Albert Einstein hospital.
He had been rushed to hospital on Saturday - the third time in four months - and had been in critical condition in an intensive care unit, breathing with the help of a ventilator.
Socrates was twice admitted to intensive care in the last few months, most recently in September. Both times he was admitted for haemorrhage caused by high pressure in the vein that carries blood from the digestive system to the liver.
Socrates acknowledged being a heavy drinker, even when he starred as a player in the 1980s, but said he stopped drinking earlier this year after his stints in the hospital.
Socrates was above average both on and off the field. He became a doctor after retiring from soccer and later became a popular TV commentator and columnist, always with unique and controversial opinions. He never denied his fondness for drinking, from the time he was a player until his final days.
Since his time as a player, Socrates never kept his political ideas to himself and often wrote about the subject in his newspaper columns. Known as Dr Socrates because of his practice of medicine, he was the main commentator on a weekly TV sports programme and was constantly in demand from local media for interviews on varied subjects.
With Brazilian club Corinthians, Socrates spearheaded a movement called the Corinthians Democracy, in which players protested against the long periods of confinement required by the club before matches. It quickly became a broader protest that coincided with Brazil's fight to overturn a military regime in the 1980s.
Socrates, whose full name is Socrates Brasileiro Sampaio de Souza Vieira de Oliveira, starred for Corinthians in the early 1980s, but he also played for Flamengo, Santos and Fiorentina in Italy.
The tall full-bearded playmaker captained Brazil in the 1982 World Cup in Spain and was a member of the squad in 1986 in Mexico. The 1982 Brazilian team became widely known as the best not to win a World Cup. With players like Zico and Falcao, it fell to Italy 3-2 in the second round despite needing a draw to advance to the semi-finals.