Media reports confirmed that Ghanaian Christian Atsu, a player for Hatayspor, was found alive after he was among those trapped under the rubble of the earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria on Monday, with a magnitude of 7.8 on the Richter scale.
The total death toll from the earthquake that struck at dawn on Monday in southern Turkey and northern Syria exceeded 3,600, in addition to thousands of wounded.
And the Portuguese newspaper "Apolla" revealed that the player was found injured in his right foot and was suffering from breathing difficulties, and he was taken directly to the hospital for treatment.
The newspaper added that the rescue teams were able to find his teammates Onur Ergun and Burak Oksuz, while their colleague Karim Alishi managed to get out alone and escape with his life without the help of the rescue teams.
Media reports said that Atsu was stuck under the rubble of a building, without knowing his fate until now.
UPDATE: I'm told Christian Atsu was on the 9th floor of the collapsed building with 9 other players and 2 officials.
3 players and one official have been rescued.
Officials of the club are at the site as search continues.
Our brother will be out safe.
Trust 🤲🏻 pic.twitter.com/h7jG3sZ7iC
— Saddick Adams (@SaddickAdams) February 6, 2023
Atsu, 31, previously played for Porto, Chelsea, Everton, Bournemouth and Newcastle United in England and the Saudi pioneer before moving to Hatayspor at the start of the current season.
Atsu gave his team 3 valuable points after scoring the winning goal against Kasimpasa with a direct free kick in the match that ended with Hatay's victory with a clean goal.
Ghanaian player Christian Atsu scored yesterday the winning goal for his Turkish team Hatayspor in the last breath of the match and in this wonderful way, today he is stuck under the rubble of an unknown fate 🙏 #Turkey #Syria #Turkey_Syria earthquake pic.twitter.com/HI4MayY423
- Elhoussaine Boussaid (@BoussidHoussine) February 6, 2023
Hatayspor coach, Volkan Demirel, appealed to help the earthquake victims in Hatay, Antakya and other affected provinces.
Hatayspor'un teknik direktörü Volkan Demirel social media üzerinden yardım issterken gözyaşlarına hakim olamadı: "İnsanlar enkaz altında, yardım edin!"
— ENSONHABER (@ensonhaber) February 6, 2023
Demirel appeared in a live broadcast on his Instagram page, making his appeal, and he did not control himself during his speech, as he shed tears as he asked for help.
Zeynep Sefer Demirel, the wife of the Hatayspor coach, also burst into tears as she pleaded for help for those trapped under the rubble following the earthquake that hit their home state.