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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

Chaplain for Sport prays for family of missing footballer

Westminster’s Diocesan Chaplain for Sport has offered his prayers for the family of missing footballer Emiliano Sala.

Cardiff City’s new £15 million Argentine striker is now reportedly feared dead after a Piper PA-46 Malibu light aircraft carrying the 28-year-old and pilot David Ibbotson disappeared over the English Channel on Monday 21st January after leaving Nantes in France for Cardiff.

“The tragic supposed death of a young and talented Emiliano will be a massively painful shock to his family, friends and fans; a loss and a reminder of their own mortality,” Mgr Vladimir Felzmann, who is also CEO of the John Paul II Foundation for Sport, told The Catholic Universe.

“Grief is the price of love. I pray that those who are suffering will receive and accept God’s graces that come through the support and strength of a loving community.”

A source based in Brittany, France, recently opened up about Sala’s close relationship with his family, his dream to play in the Premier League and his strong Catholic faith.

“He’s in touch with his family all the time, mainly on WhatsApp,” the source told The Evening Standard.

“His mum often visits, along with his brother and sister. He’s very loyal to them all, as he is to everybody. The English Premiership was his dream, though.

“Emiliano is also very religious. He prays a lot. His Catholic faith is very important to him.”

This week’s Premier League fixtures:

Tuesday 29th January

Arsenal v Cardiff City – 7:45pm
Fulham v Brighton & Hove Albion – 7:45pm
Huddersfield Town v Everton – 7:45pm
Wolverhampton Wanderers v West Ham United – 7:45pm
Manchester United v Burnley – 8:00pm
Newcastle United v Manchester City – 8:00pm

Wednesday 30th January

AFC Bournemouth v Chelsea – 7:45pm
Southampton v Crystal Palace – 7:45pm
Liverpool v Leicester City – 8:00pm
Tottenham Hotspur v Watford – 8:00pm

Saturday 2nd February

Tottenham Hotspur v Newcastle United – 12:30pm
Brighton & Hove Albion v Watford – 3:00pm
Burnley v Southampton – 3:00pm
Chelsea v Huddersfield Town – 3:00pm
Crystal Palace v Fulham – 3:00pm
Everton v Wolverhampton Wanderers – 3:00pm
Cardiff City v AFC Bournemouth – 5:30pm

Sunday 3rd February

Leicester City v Manchester United – 2:05pm
Manchester City v Arsenal – 4:30pm

Monday 4th February

West Ham United v Liverpool – 8:00pm

Picture: Emiliano Sala during the French First League soccer match, PSG vs Nantes in Parc des Princes, France, on 22nd December 2018. (Szwarc Henri/ABACA/ABACA/PA).