Pele delights in long-awaited Olympic triumph

The three-time World Cup winner hailed the efforts of the side that claimed gold, praising them for "excellence both on and off the field"

Pele, arguably Brazil's greatest footballer, described the country's historic first Olympic men's football triumph as the "perfect ending" to the Rio Games.

Pele played an integral role in three of Brazil's five World Cup triumphs, but the nation had never tasted Olympic glory prior to Saturday's meeting with Germany at the Maracana.

After Neymar's free-kick had been cancelled out by Max Meyer, a penalty shootout was required to separate the men's finalists.

Yet it was Brazil who eventually prevailed, talisman Neymar converting the winning kick from 12 yards after Nils Petersen's effort had been saved by Weverton.

Success for the home nation prompted a huge outpouring of joy at the Maracana, with Neymar - part of the team that lost the 2012 Olympic final to Mexico - in tears after sealing gold.

Pele duly tweeted: "I have so many memories from Maracana, and today a new one was created. What a perfect ending to the Olympic Games.

"Brazil showed excellence both on and off the field."