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Made of 18 carat gold and standing at 36.8 centimetres, the World Cup trophy is the most iconic in sport, made all the more prestigious by the select few who have been able to hold it.
Replaced in 1974, the original Jules Rimet Trophy was stolen years later, and never recovered, with the new malachite banded model under strict security.
The World Cup trophy is is the most iconic in sport
From Maradona to Pele, the best have been lucky enough to hold the best trophy
Some of the greatest players to ever kick a ball have lifted the trophy aloft as they fulfilled the childhood dream of millions.
From Pele to Maradona, an exclusive list of footballing royalty have been able to hold a trophy passed down from the gods, and unavailable to us mere mortals.
Except one.
“I touched it! I think I touched it!,” said Jimmy Jump (real name Jaume Marquet i Cot) who is the most famous pitch invader in the history of sport.
“I was really nervous, a little slow, because I wanted to take the cup and go around the stadium and show the cup to the people. The real cup is for the people, not for the players.”
Jimmy got his fingers on the cup in at the World Cup final in 2010
But was taken down instantly by a security guard
Making his name on global TV sets for a decade between 2002 and 2012, adorned in a red cap, often sporting Barcelona gear or a Catalan flag, Jimmy was unstoppable as he jumped across the world.
From football, to tennis, Formula 1 and even Eurovision, the Barcelona native was continually finding his way around security guards, but it all started with a tribute to a legend.
“The first one was in 2002 I jumped in Camp Nou for Barcelona vs Alaves,” he told talkSPORT. 
“Because Alaves played Abelardo, he was playing in Barcelona five years before when we won the last Cup Winners Cup in Rotterdam against PSG with Ronaldo in ’97.
Jimmy often made it on the Camp Nou playing surface, and even the security guards got a kick out of chasing him
Jimmy even got his hat on a young Lionel Messi
“Abelardo threw his shirt, and I took this shirt, and five years later he came to Barcelona with Alaves as a defensive legend, at the beginning he received an award from Barcelona and I jumped with this shirt to say hello to a legend of Barcelona.”
Many more jumps In Barcelona followed, putting his red hat on the likes of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Samuel Eto’o and a number of the game’s greats.
Unfortunately though, that eventually cost him residence in his home country.
“The first time [I was banned from Camp Nou] it was actually four or five years and I talked with the judge here in Spain and he recommended that I go to another country because of the many bills to pay,” Jimmy explained. 
Jimmy made an appearance at the French open
Which was one of his most iconic
“Almost €300,000 so I decided to come here [to Germany], first to Munich, then in Berlin and now in Hamburg, but they recommended me to go away because it’s not criminal law, it’s only administrative, after 10 years everything is clean, it’s only a fine.”
A symbol of joy and release for the little guys who want to get one over on the elite, Jimmy was a Spanish icon for much of the noughties, and a household name.
It wasn’t all about fun though, with his iconic red hat an important message for a divided country.
“The red hat means Catalonia!” he explained. “It’s a little bit political because of the situation with Catalonia and Spain.
Jimmy almost got the hat on the trophy
But managed to go one better with Federer
“The red had was taken by the fighters 500 years ago when they fought against the Spanish kingdom, it represents freedom. 
“Also in France, a famous painting in France, when they cut off the head off the king, they made a painting and it is a person with this red hat.”
Known in Spain as a ‘Barretina’ and the ‘Gorro frigio’ the Phrygian cap is a symbol of revolution against the elite, and what better way to express that than by interrupting athletes on obscene wages.
But funnily enough, they didn’t mind. Especially the Barcelona players who told Jimmy so on multiple occasions.
The Barca players weren’t too fussed about one of their most iconic fans
“I’ve talked with the players, with Xavi, with Samuel Eto’o, because it was the best time,” he said, “I did it with the best time of Barcelona, in 2009 I was in Abu Dhabi for the final of the Club World Cup. 
“We won, and I was in the hotel, talking with the players, [Carles] Puyol, [Joan] Laporta, [Pep] Guardiola, they were crying, and also me!
“Xavi told me they are playing but smiling, because they know me, they know I’m not violent.
“[Sergio] Busquests and Xavi in a disco told me, ‘We are playing, you run, and we don’t know what’s happening, why do you jump?’ And I said ‘For freedom, to be in the show like you!’
xavi barcelona
“Everyone needs one minute in his life to be famous and it would represent my jump. I want to be famous for a little bit, but I liked it too much.
“I wanted to be more and more famous, and now I’m a cook in Germany cooking Spanish paella!”
Jimmy’s messages were often iconic, with one embarrassing Luis Figo who had caused uproar by leaving Barcelona for Real Madrid.
“I was in the Eurovision contest, the Formula 1, running with [Fernando] Alonso and [Michael] Schumacher.
Jimmy made it onto the Formula 1 grid
And even Eurovision
“For me it was fun, it was for freedom, when in the Euro final in 2004 in Lisbon, Portugal v Greece, I threw the Barcelona flag to Figo’s face. 
“He changed to Madrid and he was our captain, you cannot go to the rival, imagine Steven Gerrard going to Manchester United?
“It was the best 10 years of my life,” Jimmy continued. “It was like an energy, like a goal, I felt this energy when I jumped and I’m on the pitch.”
Jimmy humiliated Luis Figo after he made one of the most controversial transfers in football’s history
The Portuguese superstar was well aware of the sin he’d committed
Jimmy’s pitch invading career took him all over the world, and three times to England, where he loved to watch Liverpool.
He even had a role in the Reds’ greatest ever win, helping them to the final in 2005 where they staged a historic comeback against AC Milan.
Before that though, came the ‘ghost goal’ game at Anfield where a Luis Garcia winner caused years of debate over whether it crossed the line.
The ‘ghost goal’ wasn’t the only reason Liverpool made it past Chelsea
However, Liverpool, under the cosh from the new-monied and much-fancied Chelsea, had a helping hand from Jimmy.
“I was jumping there in the semis 2005, Liverpool against Chelsea,” he recalled. 
“I have a nice history in the jail, I was there all night and they told me, why are you jumping? You stopped the match for five minutes, but for Liverpool it was good! They were winning. 
The Catalan cause plenty of laughter when he interrupted the Goya Film Awards in 2011
“I was singing ‘Help! I need somebody’ I said it was a homage to the Beatles and the judge in England said ‘You go away you crazy boy from Barcelona’.”
Retired from the jumping game for almost a decade, Jimmy feels well rested enough to come back and make headlines again.
“I’m thinking of moving to England because it’s a good place to try a jump,” Jimmy pondered. 
Jimmy loved every minute of his 10 years of madness
“My life is always jumping, I am thinking about jumping at Cheltenham with the horses.”
Pitch invasions are a regular occurrence these days with children trying to earn footballer’s shirts or even just a hug, with Brazil star Neymar regularly accosted.
Jimmy was the opposite though, instead of aspiring towards the chosen few, he showed they’re in fact no different to us.
State-run football clubs, a push for biennial World Cups, and the European Super League are all clear signs that football continues to drift away from the regular fan.
And maybe next time a game is inadvertently paused, we should be keeping an eye out for Jimmy’s red hat – as a clear symbol that they don’t own the game adored by billions.
Who wouldn’t touch the World Cup if they had the chance?
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By faress

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