Pele on the mend after having surgery

Brazil legend Pele is showing signs of improvement after surgery to remove kidney stones, Sao Paulo's Albert Einstein hospital has said.

Pele was initially underwent an operation on November 13, though he was forced to return to the hospital on Monday as he picked up a urinary infection.

Reports began to circulate on Thursday that the 74-year-old had been admitted to intensive care as his condition was claimed to have gone downhill.

Such rumours were later refuted by the hospital, who revealed that the former Santos star was only moved to a special care unit in order for him to receive the best treatment.

After the Brazilian's own statement that he was "fine" on Thursday, the hospital released a positive update on Friday.

A press statement read: "The patient Edson Arantes do Nascimento [Pele] has shown improvement in his clinical condition and is still in care in the special care unit, still in temporary treatment RRT [continuous veno-venous hemodiafiltration] and lucid.

"The only bacteria identified yet is sensitive to the antibiotics used. No systemic infection was identified. The patient eats normally by the mouth.

"The hospital will provide an update when there is new information."