Emiliano Sala, the new striker for third-tier Premier League team Cardiff City, was on board a light aircraft that went missing over the English Channel on Monday night. According to the Associated Press, there are not expected to be any survivors.
The plane, which was carrying two people, took off from Nantes at 7:15 p.m. local time on Monday night, and was headed to Cardiff. According to the BBC, the plane contacted air traffic control in Jersey to request descent when it was flying at 5,000 feet. The plane disappeared from radar when it was at 2,300 feet, and air traffic control alerted Britain’s Coastguard at 8:23 p.m. local time when it couldn’t contact the plane. The plane did not make a distress call.
Sala, 28, was signed by Cardiff City less than a week ago for over $19 million, a club record. He’s played for FC Nantes of France for the last four years. Sala had been in Cardiff last week to sign the transfer, which was waiting for international clearance. He had traveled back to Nantes to say goodbye to his teammates, and was headed to Cardiff once again to start his Cardiff City career.
Sala tweeted a photo of himself and his now-former FC Nantes teammates over the weekend, captioned with, “The last goodbye.”
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. The search was called off due to strengthening winds, but will resume.