Emiliano Sala's French team demands payment of £15mn transfer fee from Cardiff City – report

Emiliano Sala's French team demands payment of £15mn transfer fee from Cardiff City – report
French team Nantes have asked Cardiff City to pay the first instalment of the transfer fee for Emiliano Sala's ill-fated and record club transfer to the Premier League side, according to reports from the Welsh media.

Sala and pilot David Ibbotson have been missing since the Piper Malibu aircraft disappeared from radars shortly after the take-off on January 21 en route from Nantes to Cardiff. 

READ MORE: 'Spatial disorientation' likely cause of Emiliano Sala crash – expert

The Argentine, 28, had been due to take part in his first training session with his new team Cardiff City the next morning following the completion of a £15m ($19.4m) transfer to the English top flight club. According to a report by BBC Wales, Nantes have demanded receipt of the first instalment of the fee and have threatened legal action if it is not received in 10 days' time.

It is understood that the agreement between the clubs was to process the payments in instalments over three years. Cardiff have reportedly withheld payment until they are satisfied with the terms of the payment.

The BBC quotes a source at the Premier League team who said that they are waiting until "all the facts" are known. They also expressed surprise at the timing of the news, as recovery operations are underway to retrieve the aircraft.

Bordeaux, Sala's previous team, are thought to be due 50% of the transfer fee as per the terms of the deal which had taken him to Nantes.

After a prolonged search, wreckage from Sala's plane was spotted last weekend and the Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) have undertaken an investigation into the cause of the crash, as well as examining the logistics involved in raising the aircraft from its position 67m beneath the surface. 

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