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Salt Bae's Appearance on Field After World Cup Final Under Investigation by FIFA

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVDecember 22, 2022

LUSAIL CITY, QATAR - DECEMBER 18: Nusret Goekce, nicknamed Salt Bae, kisses the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Winner's Trophy after the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Final match between Argentina and France at Lusail Stadium on December 18, 2022 in Lusail City, Qatar. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Add another twist to the memorable World Cup final between Argentina and France.

FIFA is investigating how Nusret Gokce, who is better known as celebrity chef Salt Bae, gained "undue access" to the field as Lionel Messi and Argentina players were celebrating their dramatic penalty shootout win, per BBC.

Gokce was pictured on the field with players and even held and kissed the World Cup trophy during the celebration.

The BBC explained that FIFA rules limit the ability to hold the trophy to a "very select" group of people. The players who win the tournament, heads of state and FIFA officials are on the list, but celebrity chefs don't exactly make the cut.

"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," a FIFA spokesperson said. "The appropriate internal action will be taken."

Salt Bae became an internet meme for how he prepared and seasoned meat and owns a chain of steakhouses.

While his presence on the field turned some heads, it didn't overshadow the incredible game.

It seemed like Argentina would cruise to a victory with a 2-0 lead through the first 80 minutes, but Kylian Mbappé buried two quick goals to tie the game and force extra time. Messi then appeared to win it with a goal in the 108th minute, but Mbappé once again answered and clinched a hat trick.

Both stars scored in the penalty shootout, but Messi's teammates came through and helped Argentina win their first World Cup since 1986.

It was also the first World Cup title for Messi in his legendary career.