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Pele, Global Santander Soccer Ambassador, Says US Team Could Be A Surprise And That Brazil Is Ready For The World Cup

SAO PAULO, June 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Legendary footballer Pele, the global ambassador for The Santander Group's soccer sponsorships, said today that "the US team could be a surprise" in the 2014 FIFA World Cup soccer tournament starting this week in Brazil.

During an interview celebrating the renewal of his relationship with Santander through 2016, Pele said Spain and Germany are the best European teams. Apart from Brazil, he commented that Argentina and Chile are the best prepared Latin American teams at the moment. He counts Neymar, the "hope of Brazilians," as well as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, among the best players.

Pele remarked that if he could choose the final match he would "play a revenge against Uruguay" referring to  the team that beat Brazil in the 1950 final known as the  "Maracanazo," for the name of the stadium in Rio de Janeiro where the match took place.

Pele warned of the importance of having a well-organized competition without problems. "It is important for the country, not only for the team, to be a success. And we're ready to start," Pele said.

The full interview is available in English and Spanish.

About Santander

Santander Bank, N.A. is one of the largest retail banks in the United States by deposits.  Its main corporate offices are in Boston and it operates principally in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Santander's 9,469 employees serve its 1.8 million customers through the Bank's 706 branches, 2,074 ATMs, call centers, website and mobile app. Supervised by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Santander in the United States is a wholly-owned, financially autonomous subsidiary of Banco Santander (NYSE: SAN), a global commercial and retail bank. For more information about Santander, visit www.santanderbank.com or call 877-768-2265.

Banco Santander (SAN.MC, STD.N, BNC.LN) is a retail and commercial bank, based in Spain, with a presence in 10 main markets. Santander is the largest bank in the euro zone by market capitalization. Founded in 1857, Santander had EUR 1.24 trillion in managed funds, 103 million customers, 13,927 branches – more than any other international bank – and 182,958 employees at the close of 2013. It is the largest financial group in Spain and Latin America. It also has significant positions in the United Kingdom, Portugal, Germany, Poland and the northeast United States. Santander registered EUR 4.37 billion in attributable profit in 2013, an increase of 90% from the previous year.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Mary Ellen HigginsDirector of Public Relations  mhiggins@santander.us   617.346.7431 

Nancy Orlando Public Relations Manager nancy.orlando@santander.us 617.757.5765

SOURCE The Santander Group

Copyright 2011 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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