According to his agency, Ghana soccer player Christian Atsu’s corpse was discovered beneath debris on Saturday, nearly two weeks after the earthquake that ravaged Turkey and Syria.
“It is with heavy hearts that I have to inform all well wishers that regrettably Christian Atsu’s corpse was found this morning,” said Atsu’s agent Nana Sechere in a tweet. “My heartfelt sympathies are sent to his family and loved ones.”
The corpse of a Hatayspor player was discovered in the wreckage of a damaged building in Antakya on Saturday, according to Turkey’s national news station TRT Haber.
According to a tweet from his team, Hatayaspor, his corpse will be returned to Ghana. “Peace be with you, kind person. “There are no words to express how devastated we are,” the message said.
According to the most recent figures provided by Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu, Atsu went missing after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Turkey and Syria on February 6, killing at least 45,513 people, with at least 39,672 dying in Turkey.
In the immediate aftermath, there was uncertainty since first reports from Turkey said that Atsu had been found and was in a hospital, but on February 8, Sechere tweeted that, contrary to claims, Atsu was still missing.
Atsu had previously played in the Saudi Pro League for Al Raed FC before joining Hatayspor last year. He also played for Chelsea, Everton, Bournemouth, and Newcastle.
Newcastle United, with whom Atsu played from 2016 to 2021, making 121 appearances and assisting the club’s elevation to the English Premier League, issued the following statement: “We are very sorry to hear that Christian Atsu has tragically lost his life in Turkey’s horrific earthquakes.”
He will be remembered warmly by our players, staff, and fans as both a terrific player and a wonderful guy. Christian, please rest in peace.”
Everton stated it was “truly saddened” on Twitter, while Chelsea said in a statement that the club “sends our sincere condolences to Christian’s family and friends.”
Atsu made 65 appearances for his nation, helping the Black Stars to the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations final. Even though Ghana lost on penalties against the Ivory Coast, Atsu was voted tournament player of the tournament.
Ghana’s Football Association expressed its “heartfelt sympathies” to Atsu’s wife and children.