Emiliano Sala: Missing Premier League footballer's plane found

Emiliano Sala: Missing Premier League footballer's plane found

Emiliano Sala: Missing Premier League footballer's plane found

The missing plane carrying Argentinian footballer Emiliano Sala and his pilot has been found, the search co-ordinator and air investigators said on Sunday.

Programme notes, penned by owner Vincent Tan and the rest of the Bluebirds´ board, said events had shaken "Cardiff City to its very core" and that they were now playing for Sala and pilot Ibbotson.

Two vessels, including one commissioned by the AAIB, using sonar had been taking part in a fresh search covering an area of around four square nautical miles.

The leader of that search team, Mearns, said they would be looking for wreckage and a debris field 120m below the sea's surface, and stated: "We will continue to work until the plane is located".

Sala's distraught dad told local broadcaster Crónica TV that "he can not believe it".

He said the body was discovered using a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) belonging to the AAIB vessel Geo Ocean III.

The Argentina striker had completed a club-record £15 million move to Cardiff two days earlier and had returned to France to say goodbye to his Nantes teammates ahead of his move to the Premier League.

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Cardiff City's programme for their Bournematch match with an image of Emiliano Sala on the cover.

"Wreckage of the plane carrying Emiliano Sala and piloted by David Ibbotson was located early this morning", marine scientist David Mearns, who directed the search, said on Twitter.

It was privately-funded search operation after the official search operation was called off on 24 January.

In a statement, the the AAIB added: "We intend to publish an interim report within one month of the accident occurring".

The wreckage has since been identified as from the missing plane.

Fans left their tributes outside Gate 3 to the northwest of Cardiff City Stadium, surrounding the statue of 1927 FA Cup winnerand club legend Fred Keenor.

Emiliano Sala of Nantes during the Ligue 1 match between Nimes and Nantes at Stade des Costieres, in a January 16, 2019 file photo taken in Nimes, France.

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