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Friday 31 March 2017

Jackson statue at football ground

A statue of Michael Jackson has been unveiled at Craven Cottage
A statue of Michael Jackson has been unveiled at Craven Cottage

A statue of Michael Jackson has been unveiled outside the stadium of Premier League side Fulham, commemorating the late singer's friendship with the club's chairman.

Mohammed Al Fayed danced with children in front of the statue of the King of Pop after it was unveiled prior to Fulham's home match with Blackpool at Craven Cottage.

And he later told fans they can "go to hell" if they do not appreciate the statue.

Al Fayed, a close friend of the late performer, caused controversy after announcing he had decided to place the tribute to Jacko outside the Cottagers' stadium.

The statue was commissioned following Jackson's death in June 2009 and was due to be erected at Harrods before Al Fayed sold the Knightsbridge store. The decision to relocate it to Craven Cottage is likely to divide opinion, with statues at football grounds generally reserved for club legends.

Jackson's links to Fulham are tenuous to say the least - he watched a game there as a guest of Al Fayed in 1999 - while the singer was also dogged by controversy during his lifetime.

Despite this, Al Fayed has refuted claims that the memorial is bizarre and lashed out at fans that have spoken against it. "Why is it bizarre?," he said after the unveiling. "Football fans love it.

"If some stupid fans don't understand and appreciate such a gift they can go to hell.

"I don't want them to be fans. If they don't understand and don't believe in things I believe in they can go to Chelsea, they can go to anywhere else."

He added: "People will queue to come and visit it from all over the UK and it is something that I and everybody else should be proud of."

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