April 2, 2023

Ghanaian footballer Christian Atsu, 31, has been discovered lifeless in southern Turkey underneath the rubble of the constructing he lived in, after final week’s large earthquakeshis Turkish agent and membership mentioned on Saturday.

The previous Premier League participant, who joined Turkish membership Hatayspor final 12 months, had been lacking because the February 6 earthquakes that devastated southern Turkey and northwestern Syria.

“Atsu’s lifeless physique was discovered underneath the rubble,” agent Murat Uzunmehmet informed reporters in Hatay.

“At the moment, extra objects are nonetheless being taken out. His cellphone was additionally discovered.

Search groups recovered Atsu’s physique within the ruins of Ronesans Residence, a luxurious 12-storey constructing the place he had been dwelling, within the metropolis of Antakya in Hatay province.

The constructing’s contractor was arrested at Istanbul airport final week whereas apparently attempting to depart the nation for Montenegro, based on state information company Anadolu.

Atsu had been scheduled to fly out of southern Turkey hours earlier than the earthquakes, however Hatayspor’s supervisor mentioned on Friday that the Ghanaian opted to stick with the membership after scoring the successful aim in a Tremendous Lig match on February 5.

Ghana’s ministry of overseas affairs mentioned it had “acquired the unlucky information”.

“The elder brother and twin sister of Christian Atsu and an officer of the (Ghanaian) embassy have been current on the website when the physique was recovered,” the ministry mentioned in an announcement.

Atsu joined Hatayspor final September after spells with English Premier League golf equipment Everton, Chelsea and Newcastle United.

there have been preliminary studies that Atsu had been rescued a day after the quakes, however these turned out to be false.

‘We is not going to overlook you’

Tributes poured in for Atsu on social media, together with heartfelt messages from his former golf equipment.

“We is not going to overlook you, Atsu. Peace be upon you, stunning individual. There are not any phrases to explain our unhappiness,” Hatayspor mentioned on Twitter.

Newcastle described him as “a gifted participant and a particular individual, he’ll at all times be fondly remembered by our gamers, workers and supporters”.

Atsu gained 65 caps for Ghana and helped them attain the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations closing, the place they misplaced to Ivory Coast on penalties. He was final chosen to play for Ghana in 2019.

“We wish to specific our deepest condolences to his spouse and kids, the household, family members and the soccer group,” mentioned the Ghana Soccer Affiliation.

He joined Chelsea from Porto in 2013 and had a number of mortgage spells at golf equipment together with Vitesse and Bournemouth.

“Chelsea sends our heartfelt condolences to Christian’s household and buddies and to all these affected by the earthquake tragedy,” the London membership mentioned.

Everton additionally launched an announcement on Twitter, saying the membership was “deeply saddened” by the information of Atsu’s loss of life.

“Our ideas are together with his household, buddies, colleagues at Hatayspor and everybody affected by this tragic occasion that has claimed so many lives,” they mentioned.

Greater than 45,000 folks have been killed within the earthquakes that struck Turkey and Syria, and the toll is predicted to rise additional with some 264,000 flats in Turkey destroyed and many individuals nonetheless lacking.

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