Former India footballer Arthur Pereira passes away

Pereira, a striker, toured Russia with the Indian side in 1971 and also featured for Maharashtra in the Santosh Trophy from 1971 to 1976.

Former India footballer Arthur Pereira.   -  Fuel a Dream ( Crowdfunding site)

Former India footballer Arthur Pereira breathed his last at a local hospital here on Monday after a year-long battle with cancer. The 70-year-old is survived by wife, Philomena, and two daughters.

Pereira, a striker, toured Russia with the Indian side in 1971 and also featured for Maharashtra in the Santosh Trophy from 1971 to 1976. He was also a regular member of the city’s well-known Orkay Mills.

A fund-raising campaign was launched recently to support the ailing footballer's medical treatment. But the hospital sources said that the former footballer’s condition worsened in the last few days and was put on ventilator support.

After his playing career, Pereira became a Physical Education teacher at St Joseph’s School in suburban Malad.

“We want to thank each one of you for all your prayers, support and well-wishes in our battle against cancer,” his wife, Philomena, said.

Prashant Karunakaran, a family friend, who was running the crowd-funding programme along with Francis Fernandes, a sports instructor, told Sportstar that they had raised above Rs. 7 lakh to support the former footballer. “We were targeting Rs. 10 lakh and we were pretty close to that. We had two more days in hand, but now, he is gone. It is hard to believe,” Karunakaran said.

As his elder daughter, Jene — who is in Mexico — may not be able to reach the city, younger daughter, Joyce, will perform the last rites on Wednesday.

  Dugout videos