West Brom have signed Kenneth Zohore from Cardiff City for a reported £8million, the Danish striker replacing the departed Salomon Rondon after his move to China.

Zohore, who scored a single Premier League goal in 19 top-flight appearances for the relegated Bluebirds last term, has signed a four-year contract with Slaven Bilic's side.

"He is a player who has got more than a bit of everything, he's strong, he has pace, he has good skill," Bilic told West Brom's official website.

"He knows the league, he knows the country, he's already got good experience but he's still got room to improve. He's not the finished article. I hope he's going to be a very good player for us."

Police investigating the death of Emiliano Sala have confirmed a man has been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter by an unlawful act.

Sala and pilot David Ibbotson died when the plane they were travelling in to Wales, after the 28-year-old striker joined Cardiff City from Nantes, crashed in the English Channel on January 21.

Detective Inspector Simon Huxter, of Dorset Police's major crime investigation team, said in a statement on Wednesday: "We have carried out a wide-ranging investigation into the circumstances of the death of Mr Sala and continue to work with partner agencies including the Civil Aviation Authority.

"As part of this investigation we have to consider whether there is any evidence of any suspected criminality and as a result of our enquiries we have today, Wednesday 19 June 2019, arrested a 64-year-old man from the North Yorkshire area on suspicion of manslaughter by an unlawful act. He is assisting with our enquiries and has been released from custody under investigation.

"This matter therefore is still subject to a live investigation and I would ask the media and members of the public to refrain from speculation, as this could cause additional distress to the families involved as well as potentially hinder the investigation.

"As is standard practice, we will not be releasing any further information as to the identity of the individual who has been arrested unless that person is charged to appear in court and again would discourage any speculation in relation to this."

Police added in a statement that the families of Sala and Ibbotson have been informed.

Emiliano Sala's death was caused by injuries to his head and trunk, it has been confirmed.

Argentine striker Sala was on board a Piper Malibu aircraft that disappeared over the English Channel last month on its way from Nantes to Cardiff, after the 28-year-old had become the Premier League club's record signing.

Last week, a body was recovered from the wreckage of the plane and subsequently identified as that of Sala. Pilot David Ibbotson, the only other person on board, is yet to be found.

During Monday's hearing of the post-mortem examination, Dorset Coroner's Court concluded Sala's passing was caused by injuries to his head and trunk.

There will now be an interim investigation which is expected to be concluded within the next six to 12 months.

 

Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock believes Emiliano Sala's family finally have peace after confirmation that the body recovered from a plane wreckage in the English Channel was that of the striker.

The UK's Air Accidents Investigation Branch confirmed on Wednesday that a body had been passed to the Dorset Coroner, having been recovered with the help of specialist contractors, and it was identified as Sala a day later.

The Piper Malibu aircraft disappeared with Sala and pilot David Ibbotson aboard on January 21, with the 28-year-old en route to Cardiff having completed a club-record transfer from Ligue 1 side Nantes.

Tributes have been paid to the striker from across the world of football since the news broke on Thursday, which has had a warming impact on Warnock, and he is relieved Sala's family finally have some closure.

Speaking to reporters on Friday, Warnock said: "While everybody expects the worst when it happens, I got a phone call last night and it was strange.

"It brings the family peace, offers them comfort – that's what Sharon [Warnock's wife] said from the start. I don't know how it's affected the players, one or two have always been a little sensitive.

"When I think I've seen it all in football, our fans keep surprising me every week now. I don't think there's anything that would surprise me with them, and the Arsenal fans, Bournemouth fans, fans from clubs all over.

"When something like this happens it brings all the football family together. It shows that everybody is thinking on the same wavelength and it's a loss to everyone in football.

"When you look at the finances they were able to raise [via crowdfunding] to enable the search in the first place, I found that amazing. The response has been unbelievable.

"That might have surprised everyone. To get that response is just amazing, and I'm sure anybody in the circumstances would have done that. It shows football isn't all bad news, hooliganism and everything else.

"I don't think I have to mention Emiliano [in his pre-Southampton team talk]. The tributes will have an impact. I've asked the Premier League if we can wear shirts with the daffodils and I'm sure they'll allow that.

"I wanted to mention David [Ibbotson, the pilot]. I'm sure his family will be going through hell. Our thoughts are with him and his family."

After Sala's disappearance was first confirmed, Warnock suggested the matter had made him consider his future as a manager, however he says his comments were blown out of proportion.

"I think that was a little bit over the top," he said. "As always, you get certain tabloids creating stories - but I went in the local paper and put that to bed.

"Anybody that saw us play the last couple of games will know we're up for it. It's a challenge we want to face head-on."

Nantes have announced they will retire their number nine jersey after the body recovered from a plane wreckage in the English Channel was confirmed as that of former striker Emiliano Sala.

The UK's Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) confirmed on Wednesday that a body had been passed to the Dorset Coroner, having been recovered with the help of specialist contractors, and it was identified as Sala a day later.

The Piper Malibu aircraft disappeared with Sala and pilot David Ibbotson aboard on January 21, with the 28-year-old en route to Cardiff City having completed a club-record transfer from Ligue 1 side Nantes.

Sala had been a fan favourite at Nantes prior to his transfer, having scored 42 Ligue 1 goals in the last three-and-a-half years, with 12 of those coming in just 19 appearances this season.

Following Thursday's announcement, Nantes president Waldemar Kita confirmed the striker's number nine shirt would be retired as a mark of respect.

"I don't have the words. It's a tragedy, I'm crushed," Kita said. "Emiliano left his mark. 

"That's why, like many fans, I wish to honour him by retiring the number nine."

Kita's comments were part of club statement that expressed the devastation caused by the loss of their former frontman.

It read: "Nantes had the immense sadness on Thursday to learn that the body found was that of Emiliano Sala.

"This news puts an end to interminable and unbearable waiting. Emiliano will forever be one of the legends who has written the great history of Nantes.

"There are difficult mornings, nightmarish awakenings, where unhappily reality hits us. Emi is gone.

"Emiliano Sala arrived on the backs of the Edre in July 2015 and knew how to win the hearts of the Nantes supporters.

"With his work, his desire and his kindness without limits, he finished as the club's top scorer in his three seasons.

"The homages paid to him nationally and internationally match the player and person that he was. Today, we have lost a friend, a talented player and an exemplary team-mate.

"We can't forget in this drama the pilot and his family and have confidence that the authorities will continue their search.

"Nantes, its board, its staff and its players, wish to pass the families of Emiliano Sala and David Ibbotson their deepest condolences. We will never forget you Emi.

"He's an Argentine who never gives up, Emiliano Sala, Emiliano Sala…"

When Cardiff City and Nantes debated over whether Emiliano Sala would be allowed to play one last match for the French club last month, nobody could have anticipated the desperate turn of events that would make such a matter feel so incredibly trivial.

During negotiations between the two clubs, Nantes had reportedly been keen for Sala to feature for them one last time against Angers, but it was Cardiff who eventually got their way and the Argentine striker's club-record move to the Welsh capital was confirmed on the eve of that match.

It was a story typical of the January transfer window – a buying club tenaciously chasing mid-season reinforcements but facing stubbornness from a selling club determined not to be left in the lurch by the loss of one of their key players.

Typical, that is, until a Piper Malibu aircraft transporting Sala to Wales from western France disappeared over the English Channel late on Monday, January 21.

Following a three-day operation covering approximately 1,700 square miles around the Channel Islands, a statement issued by Guernsey Police from harbour master Captain David Barker confirmed active search and rescue efforts had been abandoned after his team had been "unable to find any trace of the aircraft, the pilot or the passenger". At that stage, chances of survival were considered "extremely remote".

As an extensive outpouring of grief and sympathy from across the football community continued, a number of high-profile figures and members of the public answered the Sala family's calls to fund a private search.

That operation located the plane wreckage on the seabed and the body of a victim, which police announced had been identified as that of Sala late on Thursday.

Sala's professional breakthrough came at Proyecto Crecer in his homeland – a youth academy with links to Ligue 1 side Bordeaux, who spotted his talent and brought him to Europe in 2012.

Although his time at Bordeaux demanded patience – Sala only made 11 league appearances for the club over three years – loan periods at Orleans, Niort and Caen gave him a platform to demonstrate his abilities.

Nineteen goals in 37 matches at third-tier Orleans, 18 in 37 league games with Ligue 2 outfit Niort and then five in 13 top-flight appearances with Caen – a period in which he played alongside N'Golo Kante and Thomas Lemar – convinced Nantes to take him to Stade de la Beaujoire on a five-year contract in 2015, paying a reported €1million for his services.

Sala quickly became a regular starter for Nantes and he racked up 42 league goals in three and a half seasons for the club. This term brought 12 from 19 games in Ligue 1, persuading  Cardiff that Sala was the man to fire them away from the Premier League relegation zone.

Tragically, he was never able to put such undoubted talent on display for a club and a competition that now mourns him along with the rest of the global game.

Dorset Police has confirmed the body recovered from a plane wreckage in the English Channel is that of Cardiff City striker Emiliano Sala.

The UK's Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) confirmed on Wednesday that a victim had been passed to the Dorset Coroner, having been recovered with the help of specialist contractors.

The Piper Malibu aircraft disappeared with Sala and pilot David Ibbotson on board on January 21, with the 28-year-old en route to Cardiff having completed a club-record transfer from Ligue 1 side Nantes.

A police statement issued late on Thursday read: "The body brought to Portland Port today, Thursday 7 February 2019, has been formally identified by HM Coroner for Dorset as that of professional footballer Emiliano Sala.

"The families of Mr Sala and the pilot David Ibbotson have been updated with this news and will continue to be supported by specially-trained family liaison officers. Our thoughts remain with them at this difficult time.

"HM Coroner will continue to investigate the circumstances of this death supported by Dorset Police."

An initial search and rescue effort was called off by Guernsey Police after three days on January 24.

Guernsey harbourmaster Captain David Barker called their chances of survival "extremely remote", but a number of high-profile football figures and members of the public answered the family's calls to fund a private search operation.

The plane was located on the seabed off Guernsey on Sunday using a remotely operated vehicle, during which time a body was found amid what remained of the light aircraft.

A recovery operation was then launched following consultation with the families of Sala and Ibbotson, and the police.

The football world came together in grief and to pay its respects as the severity of the Sala story began to unfold, with floral tributes laid outside Cardiff City Stadium and vigils held in Nantes, where 42 goals in three-and-a-half seasons made him a fan favourite.

Following reports of a dispute between the two clubs this week, Cardiff chairman Mehmet Dalman confirmed the Premier League outfit were yet to pay the first instalment of Sala's transfer fee.

"We must show respect to the family. There is a process for recovering the plane," he said, prior to Sala's body being identified.

"[We will pay] when we think it's the right time to do it. I don't think Cardiff said we were not going to pay."

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