Brazil football legend Pele honoured with Olympic Order

Brazil football legend Pele was presented with an Olympic order -- the highest honour given by the International Olympics Committee (IOC) -- at the Pele museum in Santos on Thursday.

Pele joked that his nation's football team had yet to win gold at the Olympics because he never played in the competition.

"I was joking with my friends saying that Brazil never won an award, because I never played," the 75-year-old told reporters.

Fourth par - Brazil have won a total of five World Cups and the Copa America eight times, but never an Olympic gold -- having been beaten by Mexico in the final at the London games four years ago. They will be hoping to end that barren run as the host nation of this summer's games in Rio de Janeiro.

Pele added: "I joke with my friends, because we really never had a title and this was a chance God gave to me in receiving this honour. Let's hope and think positively, that maybe we can take an Olympic title, and once again, for all those who have been part of my story."

Pele was previously named the IOC's 'Athlete of the Century' in 1999 despite never having played in the games himself, thanks to then-rule that professional athletes were not able to compete in the Olympics.

Pele, the only footballer to have won the World Cup three times, was presented with the order by the IOC's president, Thomas Bach, who said: "In everything he does, both on and off the field, he exemplifies the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect."