During the celebration of the Argentine National Team after winning the World Cup last Sunday, the presence of the famous Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe, popularly known as Salt Bae, on the playing field drew attention. In several images he can be seen holding the precious trophy to the visible discomfort of the players.
After the repercussion generated by the event, FIFA announced that it will open an investigation against the cook. He argued that the trophy is a “priceless icon” that should only be touched and held by a select group of people, including former world champions and heads of state.
Salt Bae owns a restaurant in Doha, was a special guest of FIFA with VIP access during the World Cup, and posted multiple photos and videos on social media. There he is shown together with the Argentine players and even with the gold medal in his hands.
“Following an investigation, FIFA has established that some people entered the pitch illegally after the closing ceremony at the Lusail stadium on December 18. Appropriate measures will be taken,” they said.
After Argentina prevailed in a penalty shootout, the chef was seen holding captain Lionel Messi’s arm to try to get his attention. The star seemed to react irritated in the video, although he later posed for a photo that Salt Bae shared on Instagram.
Only Argentine players could lift the precious World Cup. By FIFA protocol, after agency officials deposited the trophy on a makeshift platform in the middle of the Luisail stadium in Doha, no one beyond the champions could enjoy that privilege reserved for a few.