The French civil aviation authority confirmed that the Cardiff City footballer was on the missing aircraft.
The concerns over Emiliano Sala have grown after the French civil aviation authority has stated that the player was the aircraft which has gone missing near the Channel Islands. The incident took place on Monday evening.
Sala signed for Cardiff City on Saturday last week and flew to Nantes. He was expected to return to training on Tuesday as the side prepares for the clash against Arsenal next week.
According to Sky, emergency services reported on Monday evening that a small aircraft travelling from Nantes to Cardiff went missing near the island of Alderney.
The aircraft disappeared from radar at about 8:30 PM on Monday night. It was last detected near Casquets Lighthouse at the Channel Islands.
In a statement, Guernsey police said, “Guernsey Coastguard received an alert at 20:23 from Jersey ATC, that a light aircraft had gone off their radar approximately 15 miles north of Guernsey, initiating a major search and rescue operation involving both St Peter Port and Alderney lifeboats.
“Air Search 1 and 2 HM Coastguard helicopters are also involved in the search.
Very worrying reports emerging that a small aircraft carrying two people, including new Cardiff signing Emiliano Sala, has disappeared. The plane left Nantes for Cardiff last night and disappeared whilst crossing the Channel. Rescue operations have been underway during the night
— Matt Spiro (@mattspiro) January 22, 2019
There are growing concerns over safety of Emiliano Sala after striker failed to report back to Cardiff City last night – emergency services in Channel Islands have reported a small plane travelling from Nantes to Cardiff has gone missing #SSN
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) January 22, 2019
“The PA 46 Malibu, a single turbine engine aircraft was on route from Nantes in France, to Cardiff in Wales, with two people on board when it was lost off radar as Jersey ATC was attempting to make contact.
“A search model was created on SARIS, based on the likely ditching position, and all search and rescue assets were tasked to the area.”
The rescue operation is currently underway.
Cardiff City’s chairman, Mehmet Dalman, told the Mirror over the reports, where he stated that the club will await confirmation before issuing a statement.
“We are very concerned by the latest news that a light aircraft lost contact over the Channel last night,” said Dalman.
Nantes’ Coupe de France match against Entente SSG, which was scheduled for Wednesday, has been postponed until Sunday as fears over Emiliano Sala’s safety grow.
— Robin Bairner (@RBairner) January 22, 2019
French civil aviation authority confirms new Cardiff signing Emiliano Sala was aboard a small passenger plane that went missing off the coast of Guernseyhttps://t.co/ELJJB7BHRx
— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) January 22, 2019
“We are awaiting confirmation before we can say anything further. We are very concerned for the safety of Emiliano Sala.”
The player completed the medical with the club on Friday night and signed a three-and-a-half year deal on Saturday. He was expected to report to Cardiff on Monday.