Soccer Player Christian Atsu Still Missing After Being 'Pulled Out of Rubble' in Turkey, Says Agent

Atsu was reportedly rescued from a collapsed building on Monday, but his agent said he still remains missing as of Wednesday

Christian Atsu of Newcastle United FC (30) warms up during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at St. James Park on July 15, 2020 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in all fixtures being played behind closed doors.
Photo: Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty

Christian Atsu, a soccer player from Ghana, has still not been located following Syria and Turkey's devastating earthquakes, according to his agent Nana Sechere.

The Ghanaian Football Association said Tuesday that Atsu had been pulled from the rubble of a collapsed building and was in "stable" condition. But on Wednesday, Sechere said that his client's location is currently unknown and he has yet to personally confirm that Atsu, who plays for Hatayspor, is OK.

"Following yesterdays update from the club that Christian had been pulled out alive, we are yet to confirm Christian's whereabouts," Sechere wrote in a tweet. "As you can imagine, this continues to be a devastating time for his family and we are doing everything we can to locate Christian."

Sechere promised that "official updates will be provided as more information comes to light," and asked fans to to respect the family's privacy "during this harrowing time" and to "refrain from spreading unsubstantiated news as this will only hamper the search efforts for Christian."

A powerful magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Turkey's central southern Gaziantep province on Monday morning, which was followed by a second quake about nine hours later. Turkey's emergency AFAD disaster agency reported 1,498 people were killed and 7,600 injured in the natural disaster, with 2,818 buildings collapsed as of Monday morning, Reuters reported.

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Atsu is not the only member from Hatayspor's club that went missing on Monday following the earthquakes. Sporting director Taner Savut has also not been located, according to Turkish news outlet Spor Arena.

The team's general manager Volkan Demirel told the Turkish outlet that the club has "no news yet" on either Savut or Atsu and warned that it's possible that neither member of the team have survived.

Christian Atsu of Newcastle United FC (30) holds a ball in his hand during the Pre Season Friendly between Newcastle United and Stoke City at St James' Park on September 05, 2020 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.
Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty

Translated from Turkish, Demirel told the outlet, "Please don't write that he survive without being sure that he survived. People have families, hopes, sorrows and pain are increasing."

Demirel insisted that when updates on either Savut or Atsu come in, he will share them with the public. "There is no news about Atsu and Taner Savut yet. Wouldn't I share this if they were in the hospital? I will share it as soon as the news comes. We went through very difficult things."

Hatayspor's manager explained that "people are working day and night" to rescue victims from the rubble. "I hope both of them will be saved," he said.

Christian Atsu during the Newcastle United Training Session at the Newcastle United Training Centre on January 30, 2020 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.
Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty

On Monday, Sechere said he had been in touch with "club officials from Hatayspor and all relevant authorities in Turkey," to gather more information about his client's safety. "All our energies are focused on finding Christian," he wrote.

According to Goal, Turkish club Yeni Malatyaspor said their goalkeeper, Ahmet Eyup Turkaslan, died in the earthquake.

"Our goalkeeper, Ahmet Eyup Turkaslan, lost his life after being under the collapse of the earthquake," the club said on social media. "Rest in peace. We will not forget you, beautiful person."

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