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By Alan Baldwin
HOCKENHEIM Germany (Reuters) - Formula One championship leader Nico Rosberg has had to abandon plans to wear a special helmet decorated with the World Cup trophy at his home German Grand Prix due to copyright issues after FIFA intervened.
Rosberg, who drives for German Football Association sponsors Mercedes, had shown his 712,000 followers on Twitter a picture of the planned helmet in the German colours with four stars and the golden trophy on top.
"This will be my Hockenheim World Cup special edition helmet with the FIFA trophy. How do you like it?," the German had asked fans still celebrating Germany's 1-0 triumph over Argentina in the final in Brazil last weekend.
The helmet infringed world soccer body FIFA's copyright however and Rosberg's spokesman Georg Nolte confirmed that the image of the trophy would not now appear.
A new version, shown to reporters, featured one big star with a 14 inside it and three smaller stars denoting Germany's four world championships.
"All the things you have to think about, It's amazing," commented Rosberg. "Even a trophy has its trade mark or whatever.
"That was a surprise but of course I fully understand," said the German. "It was a pity because it looked really cool with the trophy on top. Now it has a big star and nobody can take that away. The star is ours."
Rosberg, who signed a contract extension with Mercedes earlier this week, leads British team mate Lewis Hamilton by four points ahead of Sunday's race - which marks the halfway point in the season.
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Tony Goodson)