Alberto Toro


The Turkey-based footballer is yet to be found after Monday's earthquakes


On Monday, Turkey and Syria were  hit by two huge earthquakes which,  at the time of writing, had led to over 25,000 confirmed fatalities.

Antakya, the Turkish city where Christian Atsu is based, is 180km from the first earthquake's epicentre. It’s among the worst-affected places.

Initially, the president of Atsu’s club, Hatayspor, said the team had received information indicating that the player had been rescued from the rubble.

Hatayspor’s team doctor went to  the hospital where Atsu had supposedly been taken, but the 31-year-old Ghanaian was not there.

Atsu's whereabouts remain unknown. With every day that passes, hopes of finding the former Chelsea, Newcastle and Everton player alive are fading.

Hatayspor’s sporting director, Taner Savut, is also missing. The club are now remaining cautious when it comes to providing further updates.

Atsu played in Spain in the 2015/16 season, spending a loan spell at Málaga. The club say they’re “hoping there will be better news soon.”

The 7.8 and 7.5-magnitude quakes have halted all sport in Turkey. Competitions have been suspended by the country’s government.

In basketball, all EuroLeague games involving Turkish teams have been postponed, including Real Madrid’s match-up with Anadolu Efes.

When the earthquakes hit,  Spanish team UCAM Murcia were in Istanbul for a Basketball Champions League game against Darussafaka.

The Spaniards have since returned home safely. They were some 1,000km from the area affected by the disaster.

Among those confirmed dead in the earthquakes is footballer Ahmet Eyüp Türkaslan, a goalkeeper for Turkish second-division club Yeni Malatyaspor.

Efforts are underway in the world of sport to raise money for those affected. For example, footballers Cristiano Ronaldo and Leonardo Bonucci have donated shirts to be auctioned.