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Brazilian soccer great Carlos Alberto Torres dies

RIO DE JANEIRO — Carlos Alberto Torres, the captain of Brazil's World Cup-winning team in 1970 and scorer of one of the sport's most memorable goals, has died. He was 72.

A statement on Carlos Alberto's Facebook page confirmed the death.

"It is in deep sorrow that we inform that this Tuesday morning our eternal captain Carlos Alberto Torres passed away in Rio de Janeiro," the statement said.

TV Globo, which employed Carlos Alberto as a soccer commentator for their cable channel SporTV, said he died after a heart attack.

Carlos Alberto was one of the best defenders of his generation, and one of the first to play box-to-box soccer. That style of play allowed him to score his famous goal in the 1970 World Cup, blasting in a pass from Pele in the 4-1 win against Italy in the final.

At the end of that match, the 25-year-old Carlos Alberto became the last captain to lift the Jules Rimet trophy — the first three-time World Cup winners earned the right to keep it. The trophy was later destroyed by thieves.

For many Brazilians, he was just "The Captain" — even to his friends and family.

"He was more than a leader, he was an innovative player. That is why he is our eternal captain," said Carlos Albert Parreira, a physio on that 1970 team and later the coach when Brazil won the 1994 World Cup.

Former Germany captain Franz Beckenbauer, writing on social media, called Carlos Alberto one of his closest friends, saying he "was like a brother to me."

Carlos Alberto's club career in Brazil was primarily with Santos, but he later played in the United States for the New York Cosmos. His friendship with Pele was built around their years at Santos. He also played for Rio de Janeiro clubs Fluminense, Botafogo and Flamengo.

His coaching career was not as impressive, but Carlos Alberto still won a Brazilian championship with Flamengo in 1983.

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