Emiliano Sala: Police confirm recovered body as Argentinian footballer

The body found in the plane wreckage in the English Channel has been identified as Cardiff City striker Emiliano Sala. 

The 28-year-old and pilot David Ibbotson have been missing since their plane lost contact with air traffic control en route to Cardiff from Nantes. 

The Piper Malibu aircraft was found near Guernsey on Monday and a body was recovered from the wreckage on Thursday. 

Dorset Police confirmed the identification in a statement on Twitter. 

"The body brought to Portland Port, Thursday 7 February 2019, has been formally identified by HM Coroner for Dorset as that of professional footballer Emiliano Sala," Dorset Police said.

"The families of Mr Sala and the pilot David Ibbotson have been updated with this news and will continue to be supported by specially-trained family liaison officers. Our thoughts remain with them at this difficult time."

Dorset Police said the coroner would continue to investigate the circumstances of Sala’s death, supported by its officers.

An initial search for the plane was abandoned after four days, when nothing was found.

A shot of the plane underwater.
A shot of the plane underwater. Photo credit: AAP

But a GoFundMe page was set up and a privately funded search began, with two boats searching for the missing plane. 

Investigators have not been able to recover the aircraft, while the body of Ibbotson
has yet to be found. 

Sala signed with Cardiff City from French Ligue 1 club Nantes on a £19 million ($NZ36.6m) deal during the January transfer window. 

Earlier in the week, BBC Wales reported that Nantes was considering legal action against Cardiff, as it waited for the first transfer payment from the Bluebirds.

Cardiff were waiting for the investigation to finish, before handing any money over to the French club.


Contact Newshub with your story tips: