The French club ‘FC Nantes on Friday paid an emotional tribute to Emiliano Sala and confirmed their decision to retire the No.9 shirt he wore during his time with them.
Manager Vahid Halihodzic was in tears as he told reporters he had a “special relationship” with the striker Emiliano Sala.
Emiliano will forever be one of the legends who has written the great history of FC Nantes.There are difficult mornings, nightmarish awakenings, where unhappily relity hits us. Emis is gone…
‘Emiliano Sala arrived on the backs of the Edre in July 2015 and knew how to win the hearts of the Nantes supporters.‘With his work, his desire and his kindness without limits, he finished as the club’s top scorer in his three seasons.
The club have thanked the rest of the sporting world for their condolences while paying their respects to a man who meant so much to so many.
‘Today, we have lost a friend, a talented player and an exemplaray team-mate.‘We can’t forget in this drama the pilot and his family and have confidence that the authorities will continue their search.’
Waldemar Kita, president of Nantes said: ‘I don’t have the words. It’s a tragedy, I’m crushed. Emiliano left his mark. That’s why, like many fans, I wish to honour him by retiring the No 9.
The striker body was recovered from the plane wreckage at the bottom of the English Channel off ship, Geo Ocean III, on a stretcher and transferred to a private ambulance before being taken to Dorset Police and the local coroner.
The plane Emiliano board was flying from Nantes, France, the home of Sala’s former team, to Cardiff on January 21, when it crashed into the sea with the new £15million signing and pilot David Ibbotson inside.