Ghanaian footballer Christian Atsu found alive in Turkey earthquake rubble
International football player Christian Atsu has been found alive following Monday’s earthquake in southern Turkey, Ghana Football Association said on Tuesday.
“We’ve received some positive news that Christian Atsu has been successfully rescued from the rubble of the collapsed building and is receiving treatment. Let’s continue to pray for Christian,” the Ghanaian FA posted on Twitter.
Ghana’s ambassador to Turkey Francisca Ashietey-Odunton told an Accra-based radio station that Atsu had been found.
Atsu was not immediately accounted for in the aftermath of the earthquake.
Atsu’s former club Everton said on its official Facebook page: “We are relieved to hear Christian Atsu has been successfully rescued and is recovering in hospital. Our thoughts continue to be with everyone affected by the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.”
More than 5,000 deaths have been confirmed in Turkey and Syria with over 21,000 people injured following earthquakes that rocked the region on Monday.
In Turkey, casualties were reported in ten provinces, including Hatay, which is home to Atsu’s football team Hatayspor.
Atsu, 31, joined the Turkish team in the summer and netted his first goal for the club on Sunday, a day before the earthquake.
He had previously represented top English clubs such as Chelsea, Everton, Bournemouth, and Newcastle.
Christian Atsu Twasam (born 10 January 1992) is a Ghanaian professional footballer who plays for Turkish Süper Lig club Hatayspor and the Ghana national team. He primarily plays as a winger, although he has also been deployed as an attacking midfielder.
Atsu was born in Ada Foah, Greater Accra Region. He spent some of his education at the then Feyenoord Football Academy at Gomoa Fetteh, in the Central Region of Ghana which has now been changed to West African Football Academy in Sogakope in the Volta Region of Ghana. He later moved to join Cheetah FC, a club based in Kasoa.
At the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, Atsu scored twice in a 3–0 win over Guinea in the quarter-finals. He helped the team to the final, where they lost in a penalty shootout against the Ivory Coast. At the end of the tournament, he was awarded with both the Player of the Tournament award, as well as the Goal of the Tournament award for his strike against Guinea.
Atsu is a devout Christian who shares Bible verses on social media. He is married with two sons and a daughter.