Four years ago this month, Emiliano Sala was on his way to Britain after Welsh side Cardiff City secured his signing from Nantes for 17 million euros. His plane, however, crashed into the English Channel, killing him and its pilot. According to a BBC report, the EFL Championship side have now paid Nantes the first installment of their transfer fee.
Cardiff, who were relegated from the Premier League later that season, initially disputed the payment on the grounds that Sala was not an official player at the time of his death. This led FIFA to impose a three-year embargo on the January transfer window on the club.
Cardiff are now hoping their recent payment (to the tune of €8m, adjusted for interest on the original €6m bill) to Nantes will convince FIFA to lift the embargo.
The Bluebirds sit 20th in English football’s second tier and will hope the opportunity to sign players this month, if allowed, can help rebuild and reinvigorate their season.