When news first came out that there would be a Michael Jackson statue erected outside of Craven Cottage...I really didn't care that much. It was one of those things that I wouldn't know how I felt until I saw the statue for myself.
The statue went up this weekend and to be honest...it looks pretty terrifying. I remember the walk to Craven Cottage from the Putney Bridge tube stop through Bishops Park along the Riverbank. At night, you just follow the crowd since it's pretty dark. I can't imagine arriving there to see the King of Pop in all his glory staring down at me. In fact...I shiver just thinking about it.
When you own a team...you really own the team. There's nothing anyone can say or do about it. Fulham chairman Mohamed Al-Fayed showed everyone his power by deciding to erect a statue of his close personal friend right outside of Craven Cottage. Fans have been in an uproar over this decision to which Fayed responded that they can "go to hell" or "go to Chelsea." I don't claim to be an expert on customer service and fan relations but I'm guessing this isn't the best way to build fan support at Fulham.
What kind of a relationship did they have anyways? If Fayed had passed away before Jacko did, would there have been a Fayed statue outside of the Neverland Ranch? I just don't get it. I do know that friendship is important and if I had a friend who was a legendary entertainer, using a football team that I owned to honor that friend would probably be the second most selfish thing that I could do besides playing myself at center forward for one season.
Is this the worst thing to happen to one of my teams? I'm not sure. Fulham won 3-0 on Sunday so maybe the Man in the Mirror will be a good luck charm. I'm used to embarrassing situations from my teams. The New York Mets were recently insulted by a cartoon character and the New York Knicks currently play a statue at center named Jared Jeffries.
I guess the Jacko statue seems okay for now. After all, he made Thriller...Thriller.
I just hope this story will not take away from the football that is being played as Fulham looks to finish in the Premier League's top ten.
Surely, this isn't the worst thing Fayed could've done. I mean, who knows, Fayed could decide to have our new kits designed to honor Jacko for next season. I'll just stop giving him ideas right now.