Pele to visit Xanthi for launch

The legendary Brazilian soccer player Pele will be visiting the northeastern town of Xanthi on May 12 to inaugurate new sporting facilities of local club Xanthi, an impressive performer in this season’s Greek first division, the club said in a statement. Pele will inaugurate the team’s new infrastructure on May 12 and will be hosted at the center’s hotel facilities until the following day, the statement said. With three rounds of play remaining, the provincial club, placed fourth, has already secured its berth for UEFA Cup competition next season. Pele’s visit comes on the heels of one by retired Argentinean soccer great Diego Maradona, often cited as the sport’s other icon. Maradona had visited in January for interviews with local media and a guest appearance at Olympiakos’s Karaiskaki Stadium. To the delight of the club’s fans, Maradona, who has been fighting drug addiction in recent years, walked onto the stadium’s pitch alongside Olympiakos president Socrates Kokkalis, and was handed a team jersey bearing his name and the famous number 10.