NANTES, France - Nantes coach Vahid Halilhodzic admitted the disappearance of striker Emiliano Sala, whose plane came down in the English Channel, had left him "completely shocked" while fans said on Thursday (Jan 24) they felt as if they had lost "someone from our own family".
Sala had been on his way from the French club to Wales on Monday night where he was due to start a new period in his career with Premier League Cardiff City.
Police said on Thursday that the chances of finding the 28-year-old Argentine alive were "extremely remote" as they announced they were ending their search.
"I had a particular relationship with him because from the moment of my arrival we talked a lot. I spoke with him..." said veteran coach Halilhodzic who started to weep before composing himself enough to continue.