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Fears for Premier League star as plane disappears over English Channel

04 February, 2019, 17:14 | Author: Taylor George
  • Missing plane in Alderney Channel Islands

Argentinian soccer star Emiliano Sala was one of two people aboard a small plane that went missing over the English Channel, the French civil aviation authority said Tuesday. Emiliano Sala was returning to Cardiff, Wales after saying good-bye to his former teammates in Nantes, France.

The single-engine plane left Nantes, north-west France, at 19:15 on Monday and had been flying at 5,000ft (1,500m) when it contacted Jersey air traffic control requesting descent.

The search, which was halted overnight because of strong winds and rough conditions at sea, resumed Tuesday morning with help from maritime authorities in Britain and France.

A photo posted on Sala's Instagram account on Monday appears to show him with his Nantes team-mates and the caption includes the word "ciao".

The 28-year-old Sala, who has been playing for French club Nantes, signed for Premier League team Cardiff on Friday for a club record fee.

Search and rescue teams scoured a vast area off the Channel Islands throughout Tuesday before resuming the effort early on Wednesday.

Explaining the four potential possibilities, Guernsey Police said its search area is favouring the third: "They landed on water and made it into the life raft we know was on board".

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Guernsey police told the Associated Press that over 1,000 square miles had been searched by five aircraft and two lifeboats, but no trace of the aircraft had been found.

"We were very shocked upon hearing the news that the plane had gone missing".

John Fitzgerald, chief officer of the Channel Island Air Search, said a cushion and bent piece of metal were among the objects recovered.

A spokesperson said: "We can confirm Emiliano Sala was on board".

"The weather conditions are better now but the sea water is not very warm", he said.

"At this point in time we just want to know if he and the pilot are OK". Papa, I'm so scared.' The Argentine newspaper Clarin published the one-minute voice message sent to a friend.

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