- Feb 7, 2022
Mlinzi huyo Yassine Chueko ambaye ni Mwanajeshi wa zamani wa Marekani ameajiriwa na Inter Miami kwa mapendekezo ya mmiliki wa Klabu hiyo, David Beckham kumlinda Lionel Messi popote anapokwenda akiwa katika majukumu ya kazi yake.
Kilichowashangaza watu wengi ni kuona Mlinzi huyo ambaye pia ni mpiganaji katika mchezo wa ‘MMA’ anapewa nafasi ya kuwa karibu na sehemu ya kuchezea ‘pitch’, ikitokea Messi anasogea karibu na mashabiki hata kama ni wakati wa kushangilia naye anasogea eneo la tukio kuhakikisha usalama upo.
The only man to get close to Messi in MLS! Yassine Chueko is the former US soldier personally selected by David Beckham to follow the Argentina star EVERYWHERE at Inter Miami... and MMA fighter even shadows him while he's celebrating!
Lionel Messi's fairytale start to life in MLS continued with Inter Miami's 5-4 penalty shootout win in the semi-finals of the US Open Cup against Cincinnati on Wednesday night.
The 36-year-old assisted both goals in regular time as Inter Miami came back from 2-0 down before prevailing from the spot after the sides were locked at 3-3 after extra time.
In doing so, the recently-formed outfit booked their place in the final of the country's oldest and most prestigious knockout football competition, which dates back to 1913.
And the team's second final since Messi's arrival last month. But in spite of their on-field success, it was the superstar's bodyguard that continued to grab the headlines.
Owing to his massive celebrity, Messi has been flanked by personal protection that even remains in close proximity when he is on the field of play.
On Wednesday, the bodyguard - who, according to La Nacion, is former US soldier Yassine Chueko - hurried down the sideline and even continued past the corner flag when Messi and his Miami team mates celebrated Leonardo Campana's equaliser deep into stoppage time.
It's the latest in a series of sighting of the former Barcelona forward's personal protection, reportedly specifically brought on board by co-owner David Beckham.
Chueko is a former Navy Seal with combat experience in both Iraq and Afghanistan with expertise in martial arts, taekwondo, boxing and participated in several MMA fights.
The decision by Beckham to select the highly-skilled Chueko comes amid the rising number of pitch invaders in recent years. And, considering the fanfare that has been generated by his unbelievable start to life in MLS, the choice seems all the wiser.
Whether it be walking from the coach to the changing rooms, or strolling along the touchline to follow Messi's movements during a game, he is always within close distance of the Argentine.
One video that drew a lot of attention came ahead of the club's League Cup semi-final win against Philadelphia, where Chueko can be seen waiting by the entrance of the club's team coach, allowing several players to walk by before Messi appears, and he swiftly bursts into action.
Inter Miami's commitment to Messi's safety was outlined by co-owner Jorge Mas, who spearheaded the charm offensive to get him to the States, in June.
'Security will obviously be enhanced.' He told the Miami Herald. 'Players will be bussed in, going through a tunnel. All of those security protocols are already prepared both for here and away. And it’s not only for our games.
'It’s going to be an everyday occurrence and something we witnessed and I thought handled very well when (Messi) was here with Argentina before the World Cup.
'As you may recall, Argentina trained in Miami before they flew over to to Doha. We had an opportunity to see some of the Messi mania at our doors on an everyday basis during practice. So, we’re very prepared. We’ve been getting ready for this.'