A nearly eight-foot statue of Michael Jackson that has stood outside Fulham F.C.'s stadium for almost three years was taken down on Wednesday. (Ian Walton/Getty Images)
A statue of Michael Jackson that stood outside Fulham F.C.'s Craven Cottage for almost three years was taken down on Wednesday after the club's new owner, Shahid Khan, said removing it is the right thing to do, according to a report from Ken Belson of the New York Times.
The nearly eight-foot, Jesmonite statue faced the Thames behind the home stands and featured a large sign that read, “Michael Jackson The Tribute." It was erected by former owner, Mohamed al-Fayed, who called Jackson a friend. According to the times, Jackson had attended only one Fulham match. Al-Fayed attacked those who criticized the statue, saying, "If some stupid fans don’t understand or appreciate such a gift, they can go to hell."
Khan, the current owner of the Jacksonville Jaguars who purchased Fulham this summer, decided last week it was time for the King of Pop to leave the stadium, according to the Times:
"Our supporters’ views on the statue have been made clear." Removing the statue, he said, was “the right thing for Fulham Football Club.”
The statue will now remain in a warehouse, "while Fayed decides its fate," reported Belson. Fulham's manager said he is considering purchasing the statue and auctioning it off for charity or adding it to his own art collection.