Footballer Sala’s Body Returned To Hometown For Funeral

James Kirk
Author James Kirk
Collection StoriaSports
Footballer Sala’s Body Returned To Hometown For Funeral

Emiliano Sala's body has been returned to Argentina Friday ahead of the football player's funeral at the weekend.

The 28-year-old died after his plane crashed over the English Channel last month, as he made his way to new club Cardiff.

The Argentine striker had joined the Welsh side for a reported £15 million ($19.3 million) from French side Nantes and was heading to Wales after saying farewell to his former teammates.

His body was flown into Ezeiza International Airport, Buenos Aires, Friday before being taken to his hometown of Progreso, where a vigil is to be held in the gymnasium near to the striker's youth-club headquarters, report CNN and the BBC.

Sala began his soccer career at San Martin de Progreso before leaving to forge a professional career at 15.

The club posted a message on social media, writing: "We are waiting for you ... like the first day you left but this time to stay with us forever. You went and you are an example for everyone. Eternally in our hearts."

The Argentine's family members have already arrived ahead of the ceremony – with the club asking the public and press for the "greatest respect."

Cardiff manager Neil Warnock and chief executive Ken Choo also will reportedly attend Sala's funeral on Saturday, while Nantes defender Nicolas Pallois and the Ligue 1 club's general secretary Loic Morin will represent the French team.

Sala's body was recovered from wreckage of the plane last week, after a private search for the missing soccer star and the plane's pilot David Ibbotson was commissioned by his family – financed by a crowdfunding campaign.

Ibbotson, who is presumed dead, is yet to be found.

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