Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe, popularly known as Salt Bae, has been banned from the United States US Open Cup, which happens to be the oldest and most prestigious soccer tournament in America.
The ban comes after the celebrity chef crashed Argentina’s victory celebrations by entering the pitch when the Men in Blue and White jerseys were celebrating with their families.
Entering the pitch wasn’t what led to the ban though, what he did after entering the pitch is what has gotten him in trouble not only with the US Open Cup but with FIFA as well.
Nusret not only touched but also hugged and kissed the world cup trophy a total violation of FIFA’s golden rule.
According to FIFA rules, the trophy can only be touched and held by winners of the World Cup and heads of state.
FIFA is currently investigating how the celebrity chef and a number of other people gained “undue access” to the pitch at the end of the World Cup final in Qatar.
In a statement to BBC Sport, a FIFA spokesperson said: “Following a review, FIFA has been establishing how individuals gained undue access to the pitch after the closing ceremony at Lusail stadium on 18 December.
“The appropriate internal action will be taken.”
The celebrity chef was seen on the pitch after Argentina beat France in a penalty shoot-out to secure the trophy for the first time since Madonna won football’s premier tournament in 1986.
He posed alongside Argentina players, bit into a medal, held the World Cup trophy, and even kissed it.
Following this, the US Open Cup, in a tweet said that they were banning the celebrity chef from attending the showpiece event in 2023.
“Salt Bae is hereby banned from the 2023 @opencup Final” the U.S. Open Cup tweeted.
The 39-year-old chef didn’t just touch the coveted trophy but also troubled Lionel Messi for a picture.
While the Argentine captain ignored him at first, Salt Bae persisted in troubling him to get a photo.
He then went ahead to pose with other players from the winning squad including Angel di Maria, Paulo Dybala, Nicolas Otamendi, and Leandro Paredes.