The Argentinian's body was formally identified by a coroner in Dorset, southwest England, on Thursday, a day after it was recovered from underwater wreckage in the English Channel.
The 28-year-old striker was travelling to Wales to join Cardiff City, after signing a $29 million deal with his new club.
Sala's body was found after a private search commissioned by his family, financed by a crowdfunding campaign which attracted support from several leading soccer players.
Despite Ibbotson not being found, poor weather conditions meant the search operation was closed, a spokesman for the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) announced on Wednesday.
A fundraising page set up has so far raised more than £33,000 to help find him.
Of course, we would like to extend our deepest and most honest condolences to the families of both Emiliano Sala and David Ibbotson as they navigate these very hard times. "We need him home so that we are able to lay him to rest".
The French club, which has demanded full payment for the transfer, played their first game since Sala's body was identified with thousands of fans joining his former teammates in a minute's applause before kick-off.
Nantes" players had promised to "win for Sala' and goals from Kalifa Coulibaly and Abdul Majeed Waris gave them a 2-0 half-time lead over Nimes, but emotions had worn the home side's nerves thin and they collapsed to a 4-2 defeat.
"We wanted to do it for Emiliano and I'm really proud the lads have done him justice". "He and David will forever remain in our thoughts".