- Yassine Chueko was personally selected by David Beckham to watch over Messi
- But on Saturday evening the former American soldier showed that he also has a human side
- DailyMail.com provides all the latest international sports news
Lionel Messi’s personal bodyguard has become famous in recent months for frantically watching over the Inter Miami captain.
Yet he showed on Saturday evening that he also has a human side.
After Messi and Miami’s hopes of reaching the MLS play-offs ended – with a 1-0 home loss to Cincinnati ensuring their season was all but over – a young fan was seen walking onto the pitch sprinted into the DRV PNK Stadium in an attempt to meet his hero.
As he targeted Messi, bodyguard Yassine Chueko reacted quickly to stop the boy.
Chueko, the former US soldier personally chosen by David Beckham to protect Messi, stopped him from going any further before pulling him away from his star client.
Lionel Messi’s bodyguard stopped a young fan from going to see the Inter Miami star on Saturday
But after grabbing the boy, he finally gave in and let him meet his idol on the field
Although it is unclear whether he was prompted to do so or not, Chueko then puts his arm around the boy and leads him to Messi, who is waiting to pose for a photo and sign his Miami jersey.
The Barcelona legend then does exactly that and hands him back his pen, before Chueko escorts him off the pitch.
Messi’s bodyguard has become somewhat of an online sensation since being recruited by Beckham, and fans quickly took to social media to praise him for making the young boy’s day.
One said: ‘He’s amazing’.
Another wrote: ‘Awww! A good bodyguard there!’
“What a legend,” wrote a third.
While another simply said: ‘That child will never forget this moment’.
According to La Nacion, Chueko is a former Navy Seal who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He is also said to have expertise in martial arts, taekwondo and boxing after participating in several MMA fights.
Inter Miami co-owner Beckham reportedly hired him specifically when looking for a bodyguard for Messi, a decision made amid the increasing number of players on the pitch in recent years.
Fans quickly noticed Chueko watching Messi like a hawk in Miami, with the bodyguard patrolling the sidelines several times during matches.
It was a disappointing night for Messi and Miami on Saturday, despite his long-awaited return from injury.
After coming off the bench nine minutes into the second half at the DRV PNK Stadium, the Barcelona legend was sentenced to his first defeat as a Miami player after compatriot Alvaro Barreal scored a late winner for Cincinnati.
Barreal’s strike means it is no longer mathematically possible for Miami to reach this season’s MLS playoffs.