Michael Jackson statue removed from National Football Museum

Site in Manchester says it was planning to move tribute to late musician into storage for months

Chiara Giordano
Wednesday 06 March 2019 21:31
comments
Former Fulham FC chairman Mohamed Al Fayed unveils a statue in tribute to Michael Jackson at the club's Craven Cottage stadium in April 2011.
Former Fulham FC chairman Mohamed Al Fayed unveils a statue in tribute to Michael Jackson at the club's Craven Cottage stadium in April 2011.

A statue of Michael Jackson has been removed from Manchester's National Football Museum.

It comes as the first instalment of a two-part explosive documentary about the late "King of Pop” aired in the UK on Wednesday night.

The 7ft 6ins tribute to the musician was donated to the museum by former Fulham FC chairman Mohamed Al Fayed in 2014.

Mr Al Fayed originally commissioned the statue with the intention of displaying it at Knightsbridge department store Harrods.

But it was instead erected inside the grounds of Fulham’s Craven Cottage stadium by the River Thames – a move that divided opinion among the club’s fans.

It was then loaned to the National Football Museum in Manchester after Mr Al Fayed sold the club in 2013.

The museum told The Independent it had been planning to remove the statue for a number of months and that it had now been put into storage.

A spokesman for the museum said: “Plans have been underway for a number of months to remove the Michael Jackson statue from display as part of our ongoing plans to better represent the stories we want to tell about football.

“As a result of this, the statue has now been removed.”

Controversial documentary Leaving Neverland will air on Channel 4 at 9pm on Wednesday 6 March and Thursday 7 March.

Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who claim Michael Jackson sexually abused them when they were children, give details of their allegations during the programme.

Jackson’s relatives have denied the accusations.

His estate has branded the film a “public lynching” and accused Safechuck and Robson of being “opportunists”.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments