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Search for Emiliano Sala and Pilot in English Channel Ended by Officials

The Piper Malibu plane — a single-engine, propeller-driven aircraft — departed Nantes, a city in western France, at 8:15 p.m. local time on Monday, and was headed for Cardiff, the capital of Wales.

Mr. Sala, a 28-year-old forward from Argentina, had left his homeland for Europe at the age of 16. He became a star playing for Nantes in the top French league, and was recently sold to Cardiff City. He was scheduled to join that team on Tuesday.

By 8:23 p.m. Monday in Britain, his plane had disappeared from air traffic control radar about 15 miles north of Guernsey.

Mehmet Dalman, the chairman of Cardiff City, said on Wednesday that there were no plans to reschedule the team’s coming Premier League match, which is set to take place on Tuesday, according to the BBC.

“I would be very surprised if there’s any change to the schedule,” Mr. Dalman said.

The owner of Cardiff City, Tan Sri Vincent Tan, thanked those involved in the search operation in a statement on Thursday.

“Monday evening’s news shook everyone at Cardiff City F.C. to the core,” he said. “We were looking forward to providing Emiliano with the next step in his life and career.”

He added that the team continued to pray for Mr. Sala and Mr. Ibbotson.

The search for the aircraft, Mr. Sala and Mr. Ibbotson might have been called off, but the disappearance remained an open case, according to Mr. Barker, the harbormaster captain.

“We will be broadcasting to all vessels and aircraft in the area to keep a look out for any trace of the aircraft,” he said in the statement. “This will continue indefinitely.”

Source: NYT > World

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