Last week, the Turkish chef found his way onto the pitch as players were celebrating with family members at Lusail Stadium after Argentina defeated France 4-2 in arguably one of the best and most intense final World Cup matches.
Internet sensation Salt Bae was not permitted to be on the pitch during celebrations after the World Cup final at Lusail Stadium, FIFA confirmed.
The celebrity chef triggered global condemnation after he was filmed taking selfies with Argentina players as they celebrated their World Cup victory in Qatar.
Salt Bae was heavily criticised online for “pestering” the man of the moment, Lionel Messi, for a photo, in which the Argentine is clearly seen uninterested.
The 39-year-old also posed alongside other team members, including Alexis MacAllister, Paulo Dybala, Nicolas Otamendi, Angel di Maria, and Leandro Paredes.
Reportedly valued at a staggering £17.7 million or USD $21.3 million, the 18-carat gold World Cup trophy even found itself in Gökçe’s hands.
As per official FIFA rules, the World Cup Trophy can only be touched and held by a very select group of people, which includes former winners of the FIFA World Cup and heads of state
Days of global criticism has also led to questions targeting FIFA on how such an incident could occur during the final match.
FIFA has now weighed in on the conversation, confirming he was unauthorised to to enter the pitch and touch the trophy. The global football governing body said it has launched a probe into the matter.
“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,” a FIFA spokesperson said.
In the wake of the criticism,the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, commonly known as the US Open Cup, tweeted on Wednesday “Salt Bae is hereby barred from the 2023 @opencup Final.”