Ghanaian footballer, Christian Atsu is reportedly among those trapped under rubble after a huge earthquake hit Turkey on Saturday, February 5, 2023.
The former Newcastle and Chelsea forward joined Super Lig club side, Hataysport last summer, was caught up in the 7.7 magnitude earthquake.
Several members of his new team had to be rescued after the earthquake and Atsu is now reported to be amongst those still missing as a search and rescue operation gets underway. The club’s sporting director, Taner Savut, is also trapped as efforts to free them continue.
Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan in a statement after the earthquake said : “I convey my best wishes to all our citizens who were affected by the earthquake that occurred in Kahramanmaraş and was felt in many parts of our country.
“All our relevant units are on alert under the coordination of AFAD (the disaster and emergency management presidency).
“Our search and rescue teams were immediately dispatched to the areas affected by the earthquake. Our Ministry of Interior and Health, AFAD, Governorships and all other institutions started their work rapidly.
“We also coordinate the works initiated after the earthquake. We hope that we will get through this disaster together as soon as possible and with the least damage, and we continue our work.”
Atsu joined Chelsea as a youngster in 2013 from Porto before being sent on a number of loan spells. He spent time at Everton and Bournemouth before making a permanent switch to Newcastle United in 2017 having never played a Premier League game for Chelsea.
He left the Magpies having played over 100 games in 2021 to join Saudi side Al-Raed but departed the Middle East for Turkey in the summer. He scored his first goal for the club this weekend, just hours before the earthquake struck.