Nantes have unveiled an Argentina-style shirt in memory of the late Emiliano Sala, who died one year ago on Tuesday.
The Argentinian, who was 28 and had just signed for Cardiff City at the time of his death, perished when his chartered plane disappeared above the English Channel and was later found to have crashed into the sea.
– Borden: In search of Emiliano Sala
While Sala’s body was recovered and later laid to rest, that of pilot David Ibbotson was never found.
Nantes were the last club Sala played for in his career and the Ligue 1 outfit host Bordeaux this Sunday, the club that brought the South American to Europe back in 2010 as part of Proyecto Crecer, a youth academy in Argentina that was set up to launch promising careers.
Combattant et généreux, tu rêvais et méritais le maillot de l’Albiceleste. L’intégralité des bénéfices liés aux ventes de ce maillot sera allouée aux deux clubs formateurs argentins d’Emiliano.
— FC Nantes (@FCNantes) January 21, 2020
Nantes have already announced that tributes are planned as part of what will be an emotionally-charged fixture, and the hosts will wear the shirt in Sala’s honour — the proceeds of which will go to his formative clubs in his homeland.
He was educated at Club San Martin de Progreso before joining Proyecto Crecer and ultimately making the leap to France.
Sala spent time on loan with Orleans, Niort and Caen before transferring to Nantes, where he made his name and earned his swtich to Cardiff.
The Championship side are embroiled in a legal battle and face a three-window transfer ban unless they pay French club Nantes the first instalment for the transfer of Sala.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) will decide on the final outcome in the ongoing legal battle