It is with a heavy heart that we report on the tragic news of the passing of Christian Atsu, a Ghanaian football star who was among the missing individuals after an earthquake struck Turkey and Syria on February 6. His agent, Nana Sechere, confirmed on Saturday that Atsu’s body had been found under rubble almost two weeks after the disaster.
Atsu was a player for Hatayspor, and his club issued a statement on Twitter expressing their grief and announcing that his body would be sent to his home country of Ghana. Atsu had previously played for several English clubs, including Chelsea, Everton, Bournemouth, and Newcastle United, where he made 121 appearances and helped the team achieve promotion to the English Premier League.
The news of Atsu’s passing has deeply saddened the football community, with many expressing their condolences on social media. Newcastle United tweeted that Atsu was a talented player and a special person who would always be fondly remembered, while Everton expressed their deep sadness and Chelsea sent their heartfelt condolences to Atsu’s family and friends.
Atsu represented Ghana 65 times, playing a key role in helping the Black Stars reach the final of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations. Though Ghana lost the match to the Ivory Coast on penalties, Atsu was named player of the tournament, highlighting his skill and talent on the field.
The Ghana Football Association has sent its deepest condolences to Atsu’s wife and children, and we join them and the entire football community in mourning the loss of this talented athlete and wonderful person. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones during this difficult time.
Rest in peace, Christian Atsu.