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Soccer Star Among Missing in Plane Crash Near Channel Islands



Search and rescue teams are looking for new Cardiff City soccer player Emiliano Sala after his plane went missing Monday night between France and England.

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According to, France’s civil aviation authority sent helicopters and boats to search more than 1,000 square miles off the Channel Islands Tuesday for the single-engine Piper Malibu, which was carrying Sala from the French city of Nantes to Cardiff.

The plane disappeared near Guernsey Monday after the pilot requested to descend to a lower altitude after cruising at 5,000 feet. Once the aircraft reached 2,300 feet, air traffic controllers lost contact with the plane.

“From what I gather, nothing has been seen as yet. If they are wearing the right dry suits or they got into a life raft, then the probability is not too bad,” Channel Islands Air Search CEO John Fitzgerald said. “If they are in the water without any protection, the water is really too cold at the moment for any form of survival beyond an hour or so.”

Guernsey police said no trace of the missing aircraft had been found as of Tuesday.

The 28-year-old Sala was signed to Cardiff City of the Premier League last week for a club record fee of around $19 million. He had played in France since 2012.

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