A New Stadium Named After Pelé In Kigali, Rwanda

FIFA President Gianni Infantino was in participation in Kigali alongside the President of Rwanda to name a stadium after Pelé.

With this disclosing, Rwanda became the latest country to follow the FIFA President’s call for every member association to name a stadium after Pelé, following his passing in December 2022.

President Infantino settled on the decision for the global football community to combine in fortitude to perpetually recollect the three-time FIFA World Cup™ winner prior in 2022 – and at the inauguration ceremony in Rwanda, gave a speech to acknowledge the gesture.

During his address at the ceremony, the FIFA President said:

“I would like, sincerely, to thank you from the bottom of my heart that we are currently here in this beautiful stadium, which is, as we see, the name of the Kigali Pelé Stadium,” the FIFA President said.

“Pelé is football, Pelé is the world, Pelé left us much too early, but Pelé is always with us. He is with all of us, all those who love football, and it is so important that every girl and every boy all over the world can remember who Pelé was. So, thank you for this great gesture, to name this beautiful stadium after Pelé, and congratulations again.”

Rwanda follows the likes of Panama, Colombia, Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau in taking up President Infantino’s call to recognize football’s first true global icon. In January 2023, FIFA additionally declared that the Home of FIFA football pitch is to be named after Pelé.

The recently named ‘Kigali Pelé stadium’ has recently gone through an enormous scope remodel project. With the work on the actual stadium funded by the government of Rwanda. Meanwhile, FIFA contributed financing for the update of a pristine pitch.

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President Infantino ended his address by lauding the work completed by President Kagame and his administration.

“I have been in this stadium some years ago, and the transformation of the stadium is incredible,” the FIFA President continued. “I know there are many more projects here in Rwanda to boost football and to develop football.

President Paul Kagame also tended to the FIFA President:

“Dear President, thank you very much, we will have time to play football, we will have time to speak about football; we will meet today, tonight, tomorrow, and I’m sure everyone who is here will come back to Rwanda with their families, with their friends, because they saw the incredible, incredible warmth of this beautiful country.”

“Pelé brought the whole world together, a man from humble beginnings who rose to the level of excellence. That is an inspiration to many in the world with such backgrounds. That gives them hope that they can do things that bring them to the same level.”

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