- Piper's pilot PA-46 Malibu, bearing Argentine footballer Emiliano Sala, said the days before the plane disappeared that it was "rusty".
- Pilot David Ibbotson told Facebook that he [IbidotsonandSalawereontheirwaytoCardiffWalesonMondaywhentheirPiperMalibuplanedisappearedontheChannel
- Cardiff City FC, in the English Premier League, signed Sala from FC Nantes for a $ 20 million club record on Saturday.
The pilot in the control of the small plane carrying the Argentine footballer Emiliano Sala said the day before the airplane disappeared on Monday that it was "rusty". The pilot identified by UK authorities as David Ibbotan said on Facebook during the weekend that he was "a bit rusty" with the system landing system – a radionavigation system that uses a series of antennas and targeting markers of pilots in ports with limited visibility – at Nantes Atlantic Airport in France, Sky News reported.
The single-engine Piper PA-46 Malibu, which Ibbotson pilots with Sala aboard, disappeared on the English Channel along the way from Nantes to Cardiff, Wales on Monday.
What caused the disappearance of the 35-year-old plane and its two occupants remains a mystery. The Argentine newspaper Ole publishes what it says are WhatsApp messages that Sala sent to friends from the flight board where the 28-year-old said the plane "seems to be collapsing."
FC Cardiff City, from the English Premier League, signed Sala from Nantes for club records of $ 20 million on Saturday. At this time, Sala is the third top scorer in the French League 1, the BBC reported.
The United Kingdom Air Accident Investigation Unit confirmed that the plane involved in the incident was Piper Malibu registered with the N264DB. According to the US Federal Aviation Administration, the US registered aircraft is owned by a company in Norfolk, England.
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Documents received from Business Insider show that the incident investigation is usually conducted by the US National Transport Safety Board but by more than 90% of staff members who have been prolonged or suspended because of the partial closure of the government, AAIB "accepted the delegation" of the investigation.
AAIB on Wednesday opened an investigation of the disappearance.