A piece of debris found by Dutch police did not come from the plane which crashed with Emiliano Sala on board.
Debris which had washed ashore in the Port of Rotterdam had been suspected to belong to the Piper PA-46 Malibu single-propeller aeroplane carrying Sala from Nantes to Cardiff last week.
It had been discovered on one of the beaches of the Maasvlakte on Wednesday, a man-made westward extension into the North Sea of the Port.
Ad van den Berge found a curious looking polyester piece with aluminium coating washed ashore on the beach and immediately thought about the missing footballer.
He wrote on social media: “Between all reports of beached seals, I found a strange piece of polyester with a layer of aluminium. Is it from a plane?
As such, the fire brigade and coast guard began a search in a quest for more possible debris.
On Wednesday night a drone unit of the fire brigade even searched the nearby beaches and sea from the sky, while police, firefighters and coastal rescue workers searched the shoreline.
A police spokesman was more cautious however, saying: “We are currently not excluding any option, but it can also be debris from a ship.”
And now the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) have released a statement declaring: “Dutch aviation Police have been and inspected the item and confirm that it is not a piece of aircraft.”
It comes after the AAIB revealed on Wednesday that two seat cushions have been been discovered which are likely to have come from the plane carrying the missing Cardiff City star and pilot Dave Ibbotson.
The discovery occurred on a French beach near near Surtainville on the Cotentin Peninsula in Normandy – 450 miles from Rotterdam.
A statement from the AAIB said: “On the morning of Monday January 28, we were advised by the Bureau d’Enquetes & d’Analyses, the French safety investigation authority, that part of a seat cushion had been found on a beach near Surtainville on the Cotentin Peninsula.
“A second cushion was found in the same area later that day.
“From a preliminary examination, we have concluded that it is likely that the cushions are from the missing aircraft.”
Now an official underwater search of an area of approximately four square nautical miles is now due to take place this week.
AAIB investigators said their underwater search will last three days.