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Carlos Alberto inspired Brazil's greatest ever team to glory

By Robert Jones

Published 26/10/2016

Carlos Alberto, the captain of Brazil's 1970 World Cup-winning side, has died aged 72 from a heart attack. The defender scored one of the most memorable goals in the history of the World Cup, sealing the 4-1 win over Italy in the 1970 final in Mexico City.

It was Alberto who completed a brilliant team move with a powerful angled drive from the right side of the penalty area before lifting the Jules Rimet Trophy.

Alberto's death was confirmed through a statement on the official website of the Brazil Football Federation.

More: Carlos Alberto: The night I went toe-to-toe with Brazilian icon over Northern Ireland

"It is with huge regret from the CBF (Confederacao Brasileira de Futebol) that the world of football has been surprised by the death of Carlos Alberto Torres on Tuesday (October 25)," the statement read.

"The legend of the Brazilian national team, the captain of the three-time winners of 1970, died in Rio de Janeiro, victim of a heart attack.

"The wake will be held at the CBF building in Barra da Tijuca. Details will be informed soon.

"The president of the CBF, Marco Polo Del Nero, has declared official mourning for three days. The organisation's headquarters flags are half-mast. All matches in competitions organised by the CBF will have one minute of silence.

"At 72, Carlos Alberto Torres leaves a huge legacy of achievements and intense collaboration for the development of our football."

The statement concluded: "Thank you, Capita. Your story will forever be with us."

Captain fantastic: Carlos Alberto holds aloft the World Cup after his legendary Brazil side triumphed in Mexico in 1970
Captain fantastic: Carlos Alberto holds aloft the World Cup after his legendary Brazil side triumphed in Mexico in 1970
FILE - In this June 21, 1970 file photo, Brazil's team captain Carlos Alberto, center, holds up the golden Jules Rimet Trophy, after his team defeated Italy in the FIFA World Cup soccer final, at Azteca Stadium, in Mexico City. The Brazilian Football Confederation confirmed the death of 72-year-old Carlos Alberto on Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2016. (AP Photo/Gianni Foggia, File)
FILE - OCTOBER 25, 2016: Brazil legend Carlos Alberto, has died on October 25, 2016 at the age of 72. The Brazilian football team, 18th May 1970. (Back row left to right) Carlos Alberto, Baldocchi, Ado, Fontana, Piazza and Marco Antonio; (front row) Jairzinho, Gerson, Pele, Rivelino and Edu. (Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
(FILES) This file photo taken on December 05, 2013 shows Brazilian football legend Carlos Alberto Torres giving a press conference on the eve of the Brazil 2014 FIFA Football World Cup final draw, in Costa do Sauipe, state of Bahia, on December 5, 2013. Carlos Alberto, captain of the great Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup, dies on Tuesday of a heart attack in Rio at the age of 72, Brazil's Sportv, for whom he worked, announced. / AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDANELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images
(FILES) This file photo taken on April 22, 2014 shows Carlos Alberto, former captain of the Brazilian 1970's football team, holds the World Cup which has just arrived in the country, at Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on April 22, 2014. Carlos Alberto, captain of the great Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup, dies on October 25, 2016 of a heart attack in Rio at the age of 72, Brazil's Sportv, for whom he worked, announced. / AFP PHOTO / CHRISTOPHE SIMONCHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images
(FILES) This file photo taken on June 21, 1970 shows Brazilian national soccer team captain and defender Carlos Alberto smiling as he holds aloft the Jules Rimet Cup after Brazil defeated Italy 4-1 in the World Cup final in Mexico City. Carlos Alberto, captain of the great Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup, died on Tuesday of a heart attack in Rio at the age of 72, Brazil's Sportv, for whom he worked, announced. / AFP PHOTO / STAFFSTAFF/AFP/Getty Images
(FILES) This file photo taken on May 29, 1970 shows Brazilian national soccer team defender Carlos Alberto in Mexico City, two days before the opening of the World Cup. Carlos Alberto, captain of the great Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup, died on Tuesday of a heart attack in Rio at the age of 72, Brazil's Sportv, for whom he worked, announced. / AFP PHOTO / STAFFSTAFF/AFP/Getty Images
(FILES) This file photo taken on June 21, 1970 shows Brazilian forward Pele (top) celebrating with his teammates (from L) Tostao, Carlos Alberto and Jairzinho during the World Cup final between Brazil and Italy, in Mexico City. Carlos Alberto, captain of the great Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup, died on Tuesday of a heart attack in Rio at the age of 72, Brazil's Sportv, for whom he worked, announced. / AFP PHOTO / STFSTF/AFP/Getty Images
File photo dated 20-06-1970 of Brazilian footballer Carlos Alberto. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday October 26, 2016. Brazilian football is in mourning following the sudden death of Carlos Alberto, the captain of the 1970 World Cup-winning side, at the aged 72 from a heart attack. See PA story SOCCER Carlos Alberto. Photo credit should read PA/PA Wire.

A message posted on Alberto's official Facebook page read: "With great regret we inform you that, on the morning of this Tuesday, our eternal captain, Carlos Alberto Torres, passed away in Rio de Janeiro. #Capitaeterno."

Alberto's former club Santos, for whom he played more than 400 games and helped win the domestic Brazilian title four times between 1967 and 1973, also revealed there would be three days of official mourning for a player "considered the best right-back in the history of Praiano Alvinegro".

Former Germany captain Franz Beckenbauer, himself a World Cup winner in 1974, paid tribute to "one of his best friends" in a post on his official Twitter account, @beckenbauer, which included a photo of the pair together from a charity trip to Brazil in 2013.

"Heidi and me are deeply shocked. Carlos Alberto was like a brother to me, one of my best friends," the German wrote.

Alberto won a total of 53 caps for Brazil, retiring from international football in 1978 following a battle against persistent knee problems.

He also helped Fluminense secure domestic trophies before later in his career enjoying a spell with New York Cosmos in the North American Soccer League alongside Pele.

The Brazilian moved into management at his former club Flamengo, where his side won the Brazilian championship in 1983, as well as spending time in charge at Corinthians and Fluminense.

Alberto also held coaching roles with Nigeria and Oman before being appointed to take over as national boss of Azerbaijan in 2004. His time there included clashes with Lawrie Sanchez's Northern Ireland and Sven-Goran Eriksson's England.

The former World Cup-winning captain remained a popular figure in Brazil, recently working as a commentator for broadcaster TV Globo on the SporTV cable channel and featured just days before his death.

Local media report Alberto had fallen ill at his home in the Barra da Tijuca district of Rio before being taken to the Hospital Rio Mar, where it is said the 72-year-old suffered a cardiac arrest.

Belfast Telegraph

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