Cardiff City have been told by the Premier League they MUST meet the January transfer deadline like every other club despite the ongoing crisis over Emiliano Sala, chief executive Ken Choo has told talkSPORT.
The Bluebirds’ club-record £15million signing remains missing, along with pilot David Ibbotson, after the plane flying him from Nantes to Cardiff disappeared from radar over the English channel on Monday evening.
Search and rescue operations resumed on Thursday morning, but while the entire football world is hoping for a miracle, business must unfortunately continue for the Welsh club.
Cardiff are caught in an unthinkable balancing act – continuing to support the search for Sala and support his family, but also try to ensure their future in the Premier League.
Sala was Neil Warnock’s number one target in January and signing the striker – who has scored 13 goals for Nantes this season – was a massive coup for the club.
And while it may appear insensitive at this time, Cardiff still have to plan for their relegation battle – they currently sit 18th in the table – and this week’s events have ripped the manager’s plans for the rest of the season away from him.
Ken Choo, the club’s CEO, joined talkSPORT host Jim White for an exclusive interview on Thursday to discuss the latest on the search for Sala.
And he revealed the club will NOT be given special dispensation by the Premier League for more time to make signings, despite this happening just a week before the window shuts.
“From the club’s perspective we are managing this situation now but we have another department that has to continue looking at the transfers.
“It’s really difficult physically, emotionally and mentally to try and cope in a situation like this.
“We have to segregate our mind into looking for Emiliano, helping the family and provide our best care for the family by giving them the information they want, which is totally factual.
“And then we are still running a business which continues, and we still have to meet the transfer deadline
“I have spoken to the Premier League, I have spoken with (managing director) Richard Masters and the Premier League executives yesterday.
“I said how tough it is for us to cope, given that there is eight days to go and we’ve been watching Emiliano for months and we finally got it over the line and then…
“There are eight days to go and we don’t really know how to cope with this scenario.
“But we have to meet the deadline. The bottom line from the Premier League is we have to meet the deadline like anybody else.”
Listen to talkSPORT’s interview with Cardiff CEO Ken Choo in full above