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The devastating story behind this photo of a waiting dog.

On Saturday a woman named Romina Sala posted a photo of a lonely looking dog with a caption in her native Spanish that translates to: “Nala is waiting for you, too.”

Without context, this could be a sweet photo from a girlfriend awaiting the return of her boyfriend from a trip, or even a long day at work.

But sadly this dog’s owner won’t be returning. The context of this image is much more tragic than the loneliness of one dog.

Romina is the sister of Argentine professional soccer player Emiliano Sala, who, since January 21, has been missing after his plane disappeared over the English Channel last month.

This week accident investigators found a body in the wreckage of the plane carrying Emiliano and the plane’s pilot David Ibbotson.

It is almost certainly either the 28-year-old or the pilot.

The UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch said on Monday that footage that shows a body in the wreckage was filmed using an underwater remotely-operated vehicle which was surveying the area after the plane was located on Sunday.

Analysis of the footage by AAIB investigators confirmed the wreckage was of the missing Piper Malibu aircraft.

emiliano sala
Emiliano Sala played for FC Nantes, but was going to play his next season in the English Premier League. Image: Getty
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"We are attempting to recover the body. If we are successful, we will consider the feasibility of recovering the aircraft wreckage," an AAIB spokesman said.

"Strong tidal conditions mean we can only use the remotely operated vehicle for limited periods each day and this will mean that progress is slow.

"Regardless of the results, we will not be making a further statement until the families have been informed."

The plane had been flying from Nantes in France to Cardiff, Wales, where Emiliano had recently signed as a footballer for the Premier League football club. He was due to start training last month.

The FC Nantes star's father has spoken of his anguish and disbelief after the wreckage was discovered.

Speaking at his home in Argentina, Horacio Sala said he was "desperate" after a privately-funded search operation found the aircraft in waters north of Guernsey on Sunday.

"I cannot believe it. This is a dream. A bad dream. I am desperate," Horacio told local broadcaster Cronica TV.

News outlets are reporting that Emiliano had been in the process of making arrangements for his beloved dog, Nala, to move to Wales with him.

And now Nala waits, for an owner who will never return.

-With AAP

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