Former Roma star Nicolo Zaniolo has sent a touching tribute to fan, 17, who pushed for him to join Galatasaray days before dying in Turkish earthquake.
In an official video posted by the Turkish club, Nicolo Zaniolo gave it a touch of class by taking moments to send a touching tribute to the unfortunate casualty of the Turkish earthquake.
While his message was scripted and aired with a touch of compassion and sympathy, the video footage was well staged to convey the condolences of Zaniolo and Galatasaray to the 17-year-old.
In the footage, Nicolo Zaniolo unveiled Jersey number 17 as his new shirt number in a symbolic tribute to the teenager who died at the age of 17 in the earthquake.
The video and the symbolic jersey number alluding to the age of the teenager is Galatasaray’s and Zaniolo’s way of paying last respects to the fan and the victims of the disastrous earthquake.
Zaniolo said: “I am very sorry for Mohammed and the Turkish people.”
Zaniolo, 23, joined the Turkish giants on a four-year deal earlier this week after falling out of favour at Roma.
Galatasaray will pay £14.6million up front with £11.5m in add-ons.
Zaniolo will pick up just over £3m-a-season and has a £30m release clause should he impress.
The Italy star will wear the No. 17 for Galatasaray in memory of the fan who sadly died in the earthquake.
The 17-year-old fan, later identified as Muhammed Emin Ozkan, passed away after he pressed hard on his social media handle for Galatasaray to sign Nicolo Zaniolo.
The disaster in Turkey and Syria has so far taken over 15,000 lives and left millions without homes.
The world awoke to the massive disaster after a 7.7 magnitude earthquake hit Southeastern part of Turkey and Syria. Even while rescue operations were ongoing, another earthquake of a higher magnitude of 7.8 struck.
A number of victims were buried with many casualties recorded. Tall and giant structures and buildings were leveled, including many infrastructural facilities.
Ghana international and former Premier League star Christian Atsu was buried in the earthquake, including other Hatayspor players and staff.
There were reports he was finally rescued alive and hospitalized, but a contradictory report emerged he is still missing.
A top Turkish goalkeeper Ahmet Turkaslan has reportedly died in the wreckage. The building which Marasspol players lodged was also reportedly brought to rubble by the earthquake.
Following the disastrous incident, Turkey emergency rescue team swing into action, rescuing a number of trapped victims alive, while many died under the rubble.
Mohammed Emid Ozkan, 17, happened to be among the casualties of the earthquake, and could not be rescued alive.
Before his death, he has been a passionate fans of Nicolo Zaniolo and was leading the call among Galatasaray fans to sign Nicolo Zaniolo from Roma.