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‘Removing lucky Michael Jackson statue got Fulham relegated’

GOOD LUCK: The Jackson statue before it was removed from Fulham (PA)

FULHAM WERE relegated from the Premier League because the club removed the “lucky” Michael Jackson statue outside of Craven Cottage, according to ex-owner Mohamed Al Fayed.

The Egyptian businessman, who erected the statue of the King of Pop in 2011, said new owner Shahid Khan was unwise to take it down last September and that its removal resulted in Fulham’s good luck ending.

The Cottagers were relegated to the Championship last weekend after a 4-1 hammering by Stoke, and Al Fayed believed it was not so much the poor performances on the pitch that cost the side, but the Jackson statue being shipped off to the National Football Museum in Manchester.

Al Fayed said: “When the new owner decided to move it I said, ‘Fine, it is a lucky thing, you will regret it later’.

“Now the new owner will regret it because I warned him. I said, ‘You will pay with blood for that’ because it was something loved by people.

“It was a big mistake but he paid for it now. He's been relegated and if he wakes up he'll ask for Michael Jackson again and I'll say, ‘No way’.”

Al Fayed also claimed German manager Felix Magath is not the right man to lead Fulham back to the Premier League, and added: “You need a manager who will deliver and I don't think this guy has got the charm or the personality.

“Players need someone very close. You saw me with the players in the changing room and when they're eating lunch, it was a very close relationship for the players to feel they want to sacrifice, play hard and want to deliver.”

Fulham’s final game of the season is against Crystal Palace and it risks being a non-event as both sides have nothing to play for except pride.

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