1. ITV Report

Warnock 'proud' of players in emotional game at Emirates

General view of Arsenal and Cardiff players paying tribute to Emiliano Sala Credit: PA

Cardiff boss Neil Warnock says his players 'couldn't have given any more' against Arsenal in an emotional game on Tuesday night.

Emotional tributes were paid to Emiliano Sala at Cardiff City's first on-pitch appearance since the search for the missing striker began.

The relegation-threatened visitors trying to seize on the Gunners' defensive uncertainty but the game ended 2-1 to the hosts.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's second-half penalty and Alexandre Lacazette's solo strike saw Arsenal take home the victory, with Nathaniel Mendez-Laing's stoppage-time effort proving mere consolation.

The striker's plane lost contact with ground crews near Guernsey over a week ago. Credit: PA

Following the performance Neil Warnock said he was 'proud' to be manager of the club and his players:

We spoke about it before the kick-off: for Emiliano we ought to try to put a performance in. I can't explain how it's been this week. You've not really wanted to get out of bed, because you know what's coming. Everything was really miserable. Nobody could actually do anything about it.

They couldn't have given me any more tonight. I'm proud to be their manager tonight. I know we've lost a game of football, but there are other more important things.

– Neil Warnock, Cardiff City Manager

Emiliano Sala has been missing since the light aircraft he was traveling in to join up with his new club lost contact with ground crews near Guernsey over a week ago.

Players also wore yellow daffodil armbands during the game. Credit: Jason Thomas

Chief Executive, Ken Choo, appeared at the game wearing a yellow daffodil in solidarity with fans.

Tickets to the match were printed in yellow as a tribute to Sala and players also wore yellow daffodil armbands during the game.

Tickets to the game were printed in yellow as a tribute to Sala Credit: Jason Thomas

Earlier this week, Warnock gave an emotional account of the past few days, admitting that the incident has shaken everyone at the club and left him questioning whether or not he wants to continue in football management.

Warnock also revealed that several Cardiff players have sought counselling following the incident which he admits has had a profound personal effect.

You think 24 hours a day about whether to carry on. In an ideal world I don't think I'd like another game at all. That's how I feel at the minute. It's been a traumatic week and even now I can't get my head around the situation.

It's impossible to sleep. I've been in football management for 40 years and it's by far the most difficult week in my career, by an absolute mile. It's probably hit me me harder than anyone else as I've met the lad and talked to him for the last six to eight weeks.

– Neil Warnock, Cardiff City Manager

The search for the Argentine and pilot David Ibbotson was officially stopped last week, it is set to continue in the coming days thanks to a privately funded campaign by the Sala family.

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