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The medal of the day The small football stadium in the village of Emilano Sala, missing in a plane crash, will bear his name

The stadium of the club Sant Martin of Progresso (Argentina), which is from Emiliano Sala. (JUAN MABROMATA / AFP)

The San Martin Athletic and Social Club in Progreso, Argentina, is the home village of Emiliano Sala, the footballer who tragically disappeared in a plane crash between Nantes and Cardiff on 21 January. A club that Thursday, October 31 at 20:30, officially give his stadium the name of Emilano Sala, the day the striker should have celebrated his 29 years. There will be a moment of recollection, in memory of the child of the country and we can already bet that the stadium, which has a maximum of 2,000 seats, will be full.

In Progreso, commune of 3,000 souls, it is the child of the country that has been lost. An exemplary, modest player who started football at the age of four. Until he was 15, he proudly wears the red and black Rossoneros jersey. A jersey that evokes that of AC Milan. Detected by a subsidiary club of the Girondins de Bordeaux, he then wins his ticket for Europe and for a career in the pros.

But unlike other Argentinian players who have been successful in Europe, Emiliano Sala has always kept the link with his homeland, his family and his friends. And when he came back, at each truce, in his village, it was without the big car. Emiliano Sala took the collective bus, offered jerseys, did not talk about him, he took news of everyone he met.

A player who had a lot of work to get there, talent was not innate to him. Emiliano Sala constantly reminded the young people of his village: if you invest yourself and if you make efforts, anything can happen. By giving his name to his stadium, San Martin de Progreso pays a last tribute to the one who dreamed of finishing his career in Argentina and makes sure that he is never forgotten.

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