Authorities in Mexico are searching for football star Alan Pulido, who was abducted early Sunday in the northern Mexico border state of Tamaulipas.
Pulido, who had returned to his hometown of Ciudad Victoria after his season with Olympiakos of the Greek league ended, reportedly was taken by armed men outside a restaurant.
Pulido's brother, Armando, confirmed the kidnapping to Medio Tiempo, saying the striker had disappeared as he and his girlfriend, Ileana Salas, left a party at around 11:30 pm on Saturday and his car was surrounded by several trucks.
Six masked men took Pulido, who has played for Mexico's national team and had recently returned home after playing in Greece. Salas, according to reports, was released.
According to the Associated Press, the Tamaulipas Coordination Group, which includes federal and state security forces, tweeted that it was looking for Pulido and there was an increased police presence in the streets of the city, the AP noted.
Ciudad Victoria is the capital of a state in which there has been a great deal of fighting between drug gangs.
Pulido, who was on Mexico's 2014 World Cup team, was recently left off the national team because of a dispute over whether his contract with the Mexican team Tigres is still valid. He left the team in 2014 to play in Europe.