The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Christian Atsu’s agent says soccer player’s location in Turkey is unknown

Drone footage showed leveled buildings and continued rescue operations after two powerful earthquakes hit Turkey and Syria on Feb. 6. (Video: The Washington Post)
1 min

The agent for Christian Atsu, the former Premier League soccer player who was reportedly pulled from the rubble of a collapsed building Tuesday after an earthquake struck Turkey and Syria on Monday, said Wednesday that his client cannot be located.

Nana Sechere wrote on social media that “we are yet to confirm Christian’s whereabouts. As you can imagine, this continues to be a devastating time for his family and we are doing everything we can to locate Christian.”

That update came a day after Mustafa Ozat, the vice president of Hatayspor, Atsu’s club in the Turkish Super Lig, told a Turkish radio station that the 31-year-old forward had been rescued in Turkey’s Hatay province, one of the areas closest to the epicenter of the earthquake.

Live updates: Turkey, Syria earthquake death toll tops 11,000 as rescuers fight bitter cold

On Wednesday, team manager Volkan Demirel told Spor Arena, a Turkish sports website, that there was “no news yet” regarding either Atsu or Taner Savut, the club’s sporting director who also was reported missing.

“If they were in hospital, don’t you think I would share this?” Demirel said. “Please don’t be sure that he survived. This should not be written as he survived.”

Atsu, who played on Ghana’s 2014 World Cup team, also played for Newcastle, Chelsea, Everton and Bournemouth in the Premier League before joining Hatayspor last year following a brief stint with Saudi club Al Raed.

Atsu scored nine goals in 65 appearances for Ghana between 2012 and 2019. He scored the winning goal deep in stoppage time of Hatayspor’s Super Lig match Sunday against Kasimpasa hours before the earthquake struck.