Incredible Scenes As FC Nantes Pays Tribute To Former Player Emiliano Sala

Here is exhibit 1,503,340 on why soccer is the beautiful game.

Emiliano Sala left FC Nantes to become Cardiff City’s most expensive signing ever on Jan. 19. Sala never played for Cardiff City, as his plane disappeared on his way back to Cardiff after saying goodbye to his teammates in France. 

Sala is presumed dead along with the pilot, the only other passenger on the plane. On Wednesday, seat cushions thought to be from the plane were found, the first evidence found of the crash. 

In Nantes’ first home match since Jan. 13, the fans at the Stade de la Beaujoire put on a tremendous Emiliano Sala tribute on Wednesday.

The fans displayed a magnificent tifo. The Argentine’s face was placed on a giant banner at midfield. The national flag of Argentina was displayed on one end. 

Nantes players then joined together to say one last tribute to Sala before taking the pitch, with the club promising to play for Emi. 

In the ninth minute, the referee halted the match to as the fans applauded their former player, who wore No. 9 for Nantes. 

Here are some more images of the Emiliano Sala tribute in Nantes:

“Our warrior forever.”

Nantes’ opponent on Wednesday, Saint-Etienne, wore “Pray for Sala” shirts during warm-ups. 

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

The soccer world — particularly in Europe — has taken time to honor Sala before (and during) matches in the last week. But this was without a doubt the most touching Emiliano Sala tribute.

It certainly beats the tone-deaf SNL sketch on Saturday, which joked about a plane crashing in the UK. 

The Ligue 1 match, by the way, ended 1-1, with both clubs having a man sent off in a scoreless first half followed by a goal from each side in the second half. 

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