Ghanaian footballer Atsu rescued from Turkish quake, says association

AP , Tuesday 7 Feb 2023

Ghanaian footballer Christian Atsu has been rescued from the rubble of the earthquake that killed and injured thousands in Turkey and neighbouring Syria, Ghana's Football Association confirmed on Tuesday.

FILE - Chelsea s Pedro, left, and Newcastle United s Christian Atsu vie for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Chelsea and Newcastle United at Stamford Bridge stadium in London, on, Jan. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, File)

Former Newcastle midfielder Atsu, 31, joined Turkish Super Lig side Hatayspor in September, based in the southern province of Hatay near the epicentre of Monday's massive quake.

"Good news! We've received some positive news that Christian Atsu has been successfully rescued from the rubble of the collapsed building and is receiving treatment," Ghana's football body said on Twitter.

"Let's continue to pray for Christian," it added.

Ghana's ambassador to Turkey Francisca Ashietey-Odunton, speaking to Accra-based Asaase Radio, had earlier said that Atsu "has been found," quoting the head of the Ghana association.

The statements did not say when Atsu was extracted from the debris, and gave no details about his condition.

Atsu spent five seasons at Newcastle after an initial campaign on loan playing over 100 games before leaving for Saudi Arabia in 2021.

He won the last of his 60 Ghana national caps in September 2019.

Dozens of nations have offered aid since the 7.8-magnitude quake struck early on Monday as people were sleeping. Freezing weather has hampered emergency efforts.

Multi-storey apartment buildings full of residents were among the more than 5,600 structures reduced to rubble in Turkey, while Syria announced dozens of collapses.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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