Brazil soccer legend Socrates was discharged from the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo on Saturday after having been admitted on August 18 for gastrointestinal bleeding. Socrates was hospitalized due to bleeding resulting from hypertension in the portal vein that transports blood from the digestive system to the liver. Widely considered one of the greatest midfielders of all time, Socrates captained the legendary World Cup 1982 team that lost 3-2 to Italy in the World Cup. Needing only a draw to progress to the semifinals, Socrates and the likes of Zico, Junior, Eder and Paulo Falcao kept attacking against Italy after Brazil had come from behind twice to level the score at 2-2.
Speaking of his health after his hospitalization, Socrates remarked: “I am well and want to launch a new campaign, the campaign for direct elections to be president of the CBF [Brazil Football Confederation].” Socrates’s remarks about democratic elections for the CBF recall his youthful commitment to democracy. In the early 1980s, Socrates and teammate Wladimir launched the Corinthians Democracy movement that established a democratic approach to club management at Corinthians as a form of protest against increasing regimentation in Brazilian football. The Corinthians Democracy Movement rebelled against rules by football clubs that dictated details of the day to day existence of players such when they ate lunch or how often they could have sex. Corinthians players emblazoned their jerseys with democratic political slogans that came to symbolize the fight against autocratic forms of government.
Today, Socrates is a widely respected commentator, outspoken critic of regimentation in sports and fan of Paulo Henrique Ganso. Socrates scored 22 goals for Brazil in 60 appearances for Brazil, typically wearing the number 8 jersey.