salt sham | 

FIFA President Gianni Infantino moves to distance himself from Salt Bae

Turkish restaurant owner 'Salt Bae' harassed Argentina players on the pitch after their World Cup win© Getty Images

Kevin PalmerSunday World

He has become an global sensation for all the wrong reasons after his bizarre antics at the World Cup final and now Turkish restaurant owner Nusret Gokce has been given a very public snub by FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

Gokce, nicknamed Salt Bae because of how he theatrically seasons meat in his chain of steakhouse restaurants, was seen holding and kissing the World Cup trophy after Argentina’s penalty shootout success over France in Sunday’s memorable final.

Gokce, who has previously been pictured cooking for FIFA president Infantino, also celebrated with the Argentina players and was seen continually trying to get a picture with captain Lionel Messi.

The chef has since posted a video showing Messi visit his restaurant, but he has come under fire after what most have described as his ‘embarrassing’ desperate to get selfies with Argentina players and the World Cup trophy.

Now Infantino has been forced to take a stand against Salt Bae, after previously describing him as a ‘legend’ in a video widely shared on social media in recent days.

Infantino only follows a little over 300 people on Instagram and Salt Bae was one of them until he cut his connection with him on the social media platform.

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FIFA have confirmed they are investigating why Salt Bae was allowed on the pitch, with his invites to future FIFA events unlikely to be so open.

The governing body is reviewing what happened and promised to take “appropriate internal action” against any FIFA staff involved.

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 December 18.

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