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Pele launches ‘the most important sports auction in history’

Photographer | Collection | Getty Images

Global soccer legend Pele is to auction off his worldly belongings next month with 2,000 pieces of memorabilia up for grabs.

A sale in June conducted by Beverly Hills firm Julien's Auctions will sell off items ranging from World Cup winning medals and match-worn shirts to personal passports and driving licenses.

Pele, also known as Edson Arantes do Nascimento, has not fully divulged the reason for the sale but said in a statement that some proceeds would go to charity.

"Having donated a significant portion of my collection to the City of Santos, I have decided to allow fans and collectors to own a piece of my history as well," he said.

"I hope they treasure these artifacts and share my story with their children and generations to come. I will also be donating a portion of the proceeds from the auction to Pequeno Principe, the largest pediatric hospital in Brazil," added the three-time World Cup winner.

The auction house says on its website that the sale is the most 'important sports auction in history' and covers every part of Pele's career. Items will go under the hammer over three days in London from June 7 as auctioneers attempt to sell more than 2,000 pieces of Pele memorabilia.

One of the highlights will be the actual ball that Pele struck to score his thousandth professional goal.

The 75 –year-old Brazilian still holds the Guinness World Record for goals scored in a career with 1,283.

Pele auction highlights

  • His personal Jules Rimet World Cup replica trophy. Estimate: $400,000-$600,000
  • 1958, 1962 and 1970 World Cup medals. Estimate: $100,000-$200,000 each
  • 1,000th goal ball. Estimate: $40,000-$60,000
  • 1977 NY Cosmos NASL Championship ring. Estimate: $30,000-$40,000
  • Santos FC game-worn jersey. Estimate: $8,000-$10,000
  • Game-worn New York Cosmos jersey. Estimate: $8,000-$10,000