Eco-activist who ran on to pitch during Lionesses match find £40

Just Stop Oil activist, 21, who ran on to pitch and tried to glue himself to goalpost during Lionesses Euro quarter final against Spain is let off with £40 fine

  • Just Stop Oil protester Jack Cooper invaded the pitch during Euro 2022 quarters
  • He pretended to try to glue his hands during the goalposts in Brighton
  • The 21-year-old was tackled by stewards, dragged off pitch, and arrested
  • Cooper, a part-time football coach, has been fined just £40 for antics 

A Just Stop Oil zealot who invaded the pitch during the Lionesses’ Euros clash against Spain and pretended to glue himself to the goalposts in an apparent bid to disrupt the match has been fined just £40.

Eco-protester Jack Cooper, who works part-time as a football coach earning around £80 a week and still lives with his parents, stormed the pitch early in the second half of England’s quarter-final 2-1 victory at Brighton’s Amex Stadium last month while wearing a ‘Just Stop Oil’ T-shirt.

The attention-seeking 21-year-old was booed by the massive crowd as he slowly ran onto the goal then poured a substance on his hands and pretended to try to glue his hands to the posts. 

He was then tackled by stewards who prised his hands off the goal and was arrested by police.

The bizarre stunt prompted BBC co-commentator Rachel Finnis-Brown to say: ‘It’s the slowest attempt at a protest I’ve ever seen thankfully.’

Just Stop Oil protestor Jack Cooper (left) arrives at court this morning

The stewards at Brighton’s Amex Stadium moved quickly to remove Cooper from goal

Cooper invading the football pitch at Brighton while England’s Lionesses played Spain in the Euro 2022 championships last month 

But appearing at Brighton Magistrates’ Court today, eco-activist Cooper was fined just £40 and hit with a three-year football banning order preventing from attending any matches.

Victoria Grey, prosecuting, said: ‘It was a deliberate and flagrant action. There were families present who were shocked by what he did and I submit that such behaviour would trigger an alarm and distress response in those who were watching.’ 

She also applied for a three-year football banning order – the minimum that can be imposed. 

Cooper told the court he had no intention of causing alarm and distress to families and children watching the match.

He said: ‘Our beautiful earth is dying. I am deeply sorry for the harm my actions have caused but I acted a peacefully as I could. I am not a criminal. I am going to university in Sept.

‘I acted out of love and I did not want to cause the families and children present any distress.’

Cooper was tackled by stewards, dragged off the pitch, and arrested by police 

Cooper wore a Just Stop Oil t-shirt during the bizarre, attention-seeking stunt 

Magistrates in Brighton imposed a £40 fine and ordered him to pay £85 costs and a £16 surcharge.

Brighton and Hove Albion’s chief executive Paul Barber said: ‘The stewards dealt with him absolutely superbly. They dealt with it according to the plan, which was to intervene as quickly as possible.

‘The game was held up for 30 seconds at the most. The referee waited for him to get off the pitch and then restarted the game, with a minimum of fuss.

‘I thought the referee was excellent, not just from the footballing point of view but also a game-management point of view.’

Darren Balkham, Surrey and Sussex football officer, said: ‘We’re pleased with the court result today which demonstrates severity of entering the field of play.

‘Stewards prevented this from escalating further in what was an international tournament being viewed on a global scale.’

Last month, Just Stop Oil protesters caused fury when they ran on to the track at Silverstone during the British Grand Prix.

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