Missing footballer Emiliano Sala's plane has been found

Cardiff City v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League

The plane carrying new Cardiff City signing Emiliano Sala and his pilot has been found and their families have been told.

The wreckage was discovered by a search boat on the seabed of the English channel on Sunday morning.

The Piper Malibu aircraft disappeared close to the Channel Islands on 22 January.

Both pilot David Ibbotson and the Argentinian footballer are missing presumed dead.

Sala had just completed a £15 million move from Nantes to Cardiff when he was returning to Wales after saying goodbye to his former teammates.

An online appeal had funded a search for the plane and the two missing men over the weekend and they had reduced their search area to just four square miles on Sunday.

Shipwreck hunter David Mearns told Sky News: "The plane carrying Emiliano Sala and pilot David Ibbotson has been located. It was located earlier this morning by my crew.

“The families have been notified and the AAIB will be making a statement tomorrow morning.

"This is about the best result we could have hoped for the families but tonight they’ve heard devastating news and in respect to the families I won’t comment any further about what has happened."

It was an emotional occasion on Saturday evening at the Cardiff City Stadium as they beat Bournemouth 2-0.

After the match, manager Neil Warnock insisted that Sala would have been proud.

"I'm really proud and I'm sure he would have been," he said.

"Knowing the lad, Emiliano, as I did, I knew he would be with us today.

Cardiff City v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League

"I said to the lads 'We have got to perform'. I thought the whole club was amazing.

"I was really pleased for the chairman, Mehmet (Dalman), and for (chief executive) Ken Choo.

"I was the proudest man to be manager of the whole football club today. The fans were just amazing."

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