A body recovered from a plane in the English Channel is that of missing Cardiff City striker Emiliano Sala, police say.
Officers said the families of Sala and the pilot David Ibbotson have been informed of the development and will “continue to be supported by specially-trained family liaison officers”.
In a statement, Dorset Police said: “Our thoughts remain with them at this difficult time.”
The force said they would continue to support the coroner’s investigation into the circumstances of Sala’s death.
“On Monday 21 January 2019 a plane carrying both men was flying from Nantes to Cardiff when it lost contact with Air Traffic Control, north of Guernsey,” the statement continued.
“Sadly a search and rescue operation was unsuccessful in locating the plane and the two occupants.
“Subsequently AAIB [Air Accidents Investigation Branch] and privately funded search teams were deployed to the relevant area. Using specialist equipment the teams succeeded in locating and identifying the plane and recovering Mr Sala’s body.”
The formal identification comes after remotely operated vehicles in “challenging conditions” were used to recover the body from the water “in as dignified a way as possible”, according to the AAIB.
Images earlier showed an ambulance bringing the body from a ship into land at Dorset this morning.