Christian Atsu, a Ghanaian football player who is currently contracted to Turkish side Hatayspor, remains missing following the devastating earthquake that struck Turkey’s southeastern border 11 days ago, claiming the lives of over 35,000 people. The 31-year-old was reportedly set to leave Turkey but cancelled his plane ticket shortly before the earthquake hit. According to Hatayspor Administrative Manager Fatih Ilek, Atsu had asked the coach for more time before their match with Gaziantep FK and said, “Can I leave if I find a team?” The request was accepted, and Atsu didn’t play in the match. However, he scored a spectacular 97th-minute free kick in their 1-0 win over Kasimpasa in the Turkish Super Lig on 5 February.
It has been reported that Atsu had planned to travel abroad to visit his family, but after his goal-scoring performance, he cancelled his ticket. Sadly, the earthquake occurred on what was supposed to be his happiest day. Atsu had a flight scheduled for 11 pm but cancelled it, and the earthquake struck at 4 am. This turn of events has been described as “absolutely tragic.”
Initially, it was reported that Atsu had been pulled out alive from the rubble. However, those reports were proven to be incorrect. Atsu’s close friend and agent, Nana Sechere, released a statement explaining that they were yet to confirm his whereabouts. Sadly, the search for Atsu has continued without any updates.
Atsu has played for several English clubs, including Chelsea, Newcastle United, Everton, and Bournemouth, before joining Hatayspor in Turkey. He is a highly regarded player with a successful career in professional football, and his disappearance has left many fans and colleagues deeply concerned. The devastating earthquake that struck Turkey has caused immeasurable damage and loss of life, and the search for missing individuals like Atsu continues.