It was in late 2017 when the internet was hit by a ‘salt storm’. Many athletes including footballers, cricketers and other were seen celebrating their triumph in a similar style; a style of seasoning salt as if there’s a fresh piece of steak or meat present on the pitch. You are getting the idea where this is going, right?
Salt Bae – whose real name is Nusret Gökçe – broke the internet by his videos of slicing the pieces of meat with sharp-edged knives and before he could know, he was exalted all around the globe. It has been more than a year now, but footballers still seem attracted towards Salt Bae’s franchises, which are located in six different countries. His Dubai outlet, however, remains the widely attracted avenue and with that being said, here we take a look at 10 footballers who graced Gökçe’s eatery with their gracious presence.
It was back in February 2018 when former Manchester United star David Beckham visited Gökçe’s New York outlet with his children Romeo, Cruz and Harper. And it is safe to say the family enjoyed their night to the core. Taking to Instagram, both David and Nusret appreciated each other and the former wrote, “Thank you for a great lunch… pleasure to meet you and hell of an experience.”
Gökçe almost brought football legend Diego Maradona to tears by his antics of serving the meat when the World Cup winner paid a visit to his Dubai restaurant. In the video, Gökçe was seen removing the bones out of the ribs and Maradona almost lost the plot by his butchery skills. Utterly impressed by his skills, Gökçe ended up having a kiss from the legend.
It was back in December 2016 when the then Barcelona winger Arda Turan decided to pay a visit to Gökçe’s İstanbul outlet. Taking to Instagram, Nusrat wrote, “He said you’re the meat artist.” And well, you cannot argue over it.
As mentioned, his Dubai outlet has been the most recognized outlet till date, and gracing the locale back in January 2017 was the 2014 FIFA World Cup winner, Manuel Neuer.
November 2016 was when Arsenal star Mesut Ozil visited Salt Bae’s Istanbul outlet.
It was March this year and Manchester City’s squad travelled to Dubai for warm weather training and this is when their striker Sergio Aguero decided to visit Nusret’s outlet. And guess what, the striker bumped into his former boss Roberto Mancini and the duo had a good laugh together.
You might very well have seen the pictures of the Real Madrid players – Marco Asensio, Luka Modric, Theo Hernandez and Dani Ceballos – having their time out in Nusr steakhouse in Abu Dhabi in December 2017, but one amongst them was no stranger to the place. Luka Modric had already visited one of his outlets in 2016.
Robin van Persie:
While his time with Fenerbahce, striker Robin van Persie had a fascinating experience. Talking to Instagram, the former Arsenal and Manchester United striker wrote; “Thank you for the hospitality! True example, first one in at work and last one out! Hardwork = success!! You are doing an amazing job”
Lionel Messi and Paul Pogba:
With both Lionel Messi and Paul Pogba rested for the international duty, the two superstars decided to travel all the way to Dubai to experience the what Nusrat has in store. Both these men tried their hands on sprinkling the salt and taking to Instagram, Nusrat wrote, “Kings @leomessi @paulpogba#saltbae #salt#saltlife”
Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas along with his wife Daniella Semaan visited Nusr-Et restaurant in Dubai in March this year. The midfielder was joined by fellow teammate Alvaro Morata, Gary Cahill and Emerson Palmieri and talking about his experience, the midfielder wrote, “With my friend #SaltBaeThank you for a great night!”
And here are a couple more: