An Argentine soccer star and the pilot of the Piper Malibu they were on are presumed dead after the single is believed to have crashed in the English Channel Tuesday evening. Emiliano Sala was returning to Cardiff, Wales, after saying goodbye to his former teammates in Nantes, France. Sala had just signed a $19.3 million contract with Cardiff. The plane left Nantes about 7:15 p.m. and was descending through 2,300 feet when it dropped from radar about 15 miles north of Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands. There were light showers and moderate winds reported at the time.
Officials are warning it’s unlikely any survivors will be found. “There was no distress call, it was simply lost from radar and from communications,” Capt. David Barker, harbormaster for the state of Guernsey, told reporters. “The weather conditions are better now, but the seawater is not very warm. I’m imagining that people in a light aircraft wouldn’t be wearing particularly warm clothing, and so it is concerning because if they’re in the water, their chances of surviving are diminishing all the time.”