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  1. ITV Report

Michael Jackson statue forced to Beat It from Fulham

A controversial statue of the late Michael Jackson which has been stood outside Fulham's Craven Cottage ground for over two years has been taken down.

Former owner Mohammed al-Fayed erected the seven foot statue in April 2011 in memory of his late friend, but Fulham fans reacted angrily to the decision.

Mr al-Fayed was unwilling to remove the artwork, telling frustrated fans to "go to hell".

The statue will now be returned to Mohammed al-Fayed. Credit: PA Wire

However the Egyptian tycoon sold the west London club to billionaire Shahid Khan in July, and after consulting supporters, the American decided to pull the statue down.

Mr Khan defended the removal of the statue arguing it was what supporters wanted and it was the "right thing for Fulham".

The statue will now be returned to Mohammed al-Fayed, but it is believed the former owner has received offers for the statue and could sell it to raise money for charity.

Many Fulham fans are unlikely to be sorry to see the back of the Jackson statue.

There was a mixed reaction to the removal on Twitter:

The former pop star, who died in 2009, visited Craven Cottage in 1999 as a guest of Mohamed Al-Fayed Credit: EMPICS Entertainment
Former Fulham chairman Mohamed al-Fayed pictured unveiling the statue of Michael Jackson outside Craven Cottage
Former Fulham chairman Mohamed al-Fayed Credit: PA Wire
Statue of Michael Jackson outside Craven Cottage Credit: PA Wire
Fulham fans take pictures of the new statue of Michael Jackson statue.
The Michael Jackson statue has rarely been popular with Fulham fans Credit: John Stillwell/PA Wire
A group of stonemasons take down the statue of Michael Jackson Credit: PA
The statue was erected by previous owner Mohammed al Fayed. Credit: PA