Former Newcastle winger Christian Atsu is reportedly missing after earthquakes hit Turkey and Syria on Monday; some of the 31-year-old's Hatayspor team-mates have been rescued from the rubble but Atsu is still missing
Tuesday 7 February 2023 09:53, UK
Newcastle are anxiously awaiting news of their former midfielder Christian Atsu amid reports he has been trapped in the earthquakes which hit Turkey and Syria on Monday.
The 31-year-old Ghana international, now playing his football with Turkish Super Lig side Hatayspor, was said to be missing after team-mates and members of the club's technical staff had reportedly been pulled from rubble.
Hatayspor vice president Mustafa Ozat told Turkish TV station Play Spor: "Christian Atsu and (club sporting director) Taner Savut are still under the rubble."
Atsu was part of the Magpies team which won promotion back to the Premier League in 2017 after joining on loan for the season from Chelsea, and later completed a permanent move.
A post on the club's official Twitter account said: "Praying for some positive news, @ChristianAtsu20."
"Our hearts and prayers go out to the survivors, and we pray that our fellow Ghanaian, Christian Atsu, is found safe and sound," Ghana's president Nana Akufo-Addo tweeted.
Atsu, who scored deep into stoppage time on Sunday to secure a 1-0 win over Kasimpasa, left St James' Park during the summer of 2021 after making 121 appearances for the club.
A 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit south-eastern Turkey and northern Syria during the early hours of Monday morning, followed by a second of 7.5.
Around 1,700 people are known to have died in the border region with rescue teams searching for survivors.