Emiliano Sala joined Cardiff from Nantes for a £15million club record fee during the January transfer window, but a plane carrying the Argentine and pilot Ibbotson from France to Wales disappeared on 21 January.
Cardiff City fans and players alike took the opportunity to pay tribute to Emiliano Sala, the striker whom they will never see score.
The initial hunt for the aircraft was called off later that week, but it picked up again when thousands of people donated to a GoFundMe page set up to raise over €370,000 to fund an underwater search.
The crew passed the details of the location to the British Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB), which used a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) to check the spot.
According to the Sky News broadcaster, a team of private investigators has located the wreckage of the aircraft that disappeared over the English Channel carrying Premier League soccer player Emiliano Sala and pilot David Ibbotson.
"Let's hope they can rescue it as soon as possible to find out what happened and have some sort of certainty", Horacio Sala, the footballer's father, told The Associated Press outside the family's home in Progreso, about 300 miles (500 kilometers) northwest of Buenos Aires.
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Body recovered from wreckage of Emiliano Sala's plane, investigators say
A body has been located in the aircraft but the two families were still to be informed of the identity as of Wednesday. The AAIB said it expected to publish an interim report within the month.
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"Based on analysis of ROV video footage, the AAIB investigators on board the vessel concluded that the object is wreckage from the missing Piper Malibu aircraft", the AAIB said Monday.
"An incredibly tragic and sad, and a devastating moment, but at least some of their questions will be answered because of what we will be able to do today". "In 25 metres to 30 metres of water, it would be a lot easier, but in 70 metres, it would be a much bigger operation".
Cardiff City boss Neil Warnock said that missing striker Sala would have been proud of his team following their 2-0 Premier League win over Bournemouth this week, Reuters reported.
Finding the wreckage greatly increases the chances of the AAIB determining why the aircraft crashed and they have said they plan to release an interim report within a month. Sala disappeared over the English Channel on January 21, 2019 as it flew from France to Wales. A privately funded search for the missing plane would begin on Sunday, conditions permitting, the scientist leading the mission said on Saturday.
Last week the investigation restarted when an individual walking along a beach in Surtainville, France, discovered two airplane chairs, which were believed to belong to the Piper Malibu plane the two men were travelling in.