Neil Warnock has revealed that he made cross-Channel trips to France on a similar plane that missing striker Emiliano Sala travelled in, and believes that he was also piloted by David Ibbotson.

Sala, who was signed by Cardiff for a club-record £15million from French club Nantes only two days earlier, and pilot Ibbotson remain missing after their plane disappeared over the Channel Islands last Monday.

"I'd been on a couple of planes like that, but I think the ones I'd be on might have had two engines," said Cardiff manager.

"But I'd been over the top to Nantes a couple of times and I do think I had that pilot, who I thought was a fabulous pilot."

Tributes to Emiliano Sala at Cardiff City Stadium

Fundraisers have now paid for a private search in the English Channel after the official search was called off last Thursday.

Warnock said he backed the Sala family's determination for the search to be resumed, with more than €320,000 raised through gofundme donations.

"I quite understand (sister) Romina's stance," Warnock said."If it was my kid, I'd want everybody looking at it forever. It's such a strange situation, everybody is hoping like the family.

"Football is important, relegation and things are important, but in the context of life, it just opens everybody's eyes, whether you are involved with Cardiff or any of the families."

Warnock admits he has questioned his own future as Cardiff manager following Sala's disappearance.

"You think 24 hours a day about whether to carry on," Warnock said as he spoke to the media for the first time on Monday following Sala's disappearance.

"It's impossible to sleep. I've been in football management for 40 years and it's been by far the most difficult week in my career, by an absolute mile.

"It's been a traumatic week and even now I can't get my head around the situation.

"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."

On preparations for Tuesday's game at Arsenal, Warnock added: "We have done the best we can in the circumstances. I don't feel personally that I'm right at the moment. We definitely could not have played on Saturday." 

Warnock revealed that the League Managers' Association had offered him support and that several Cardiff players had spoken to psychologists in the wake of Sala's disappearance.

Asked whether he had sought help, Warnock said: "You have to in this instance. Who motivates the motivator?

"I am OK when I'm in the public eye or with the players, it's when I'm at I'm on my own or at home that you think about it.

"It'a probably the lads you don't expect that needed more help. But I don't think it does any harm to talk to anyone else. It's been noticeable that three of four lads have been really poor."