Christian Atsu trapped under rubble after Turkey earthquake

Hatayspor winger Christian Atsu has reportedly been left trapped under rubble after an earthquake devastated Southern Turkey.

In the early hours of Monday morning, the natural disaster registering 7.8 on the Richter scale hit the country and North­ern Syria.

The initial quake, which was followed by another reaching 7.5 at 1.30pm, local time, originated close to Gaziantep, but the im­pact was felt on a larger scale.

As of Monday afternoon, the death toll had reached 1,797, with hundreds of people still feared

 trapped under rubble with many buildings having collapsed in multiple cities and towns.

According to local media, Atsu is one of the people who remains missing on the back of several of his teammates having been rescued from their homes in Hatayspor.

On Sunday afternoon, Atsu had scored a 96th-minute winner to earn his side a 1-0 win over Kasimpasa which moved the club outside of the Super Lig relega­tion zone.

That represented the Ghana international’s first goal in three substitute outings for Hatayspor, who he joined last summer after a spell in Saudi Arabia.

The 31-year-old has rep­resented nine clubs during his professional career, but he is best known for his time associated with Newcastle United.

Between 2016 and 2021, Atsu made 121 appearances for the Magpies in all competitions, contributing eight goals and 10 assists.

Atsu also signed for Chelsea in August 2013 but he never played a game for the Blues, instead going out on loan on five occcasions.

As it stands, it is unclear when Turkish football will resume with Monday’s three fixtures having been immediately postponed and more are expected to follow.

Leaders Galatasaray are currently due to travel to Ga­ziantep FK on February 13, but it appears highly likely that the contest will be rescheduled in due course. —Reuters

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