Following criticism of Tesco for selling an inflatable “Gay Best Friend” doll – US online retailers Amazon and Ebay are facing pressure to remove the product from their websites.

On Friday Tesco apologised after PinkNews was alerted to the item this morning. Britain’s largest supermarket said the doll was “offensive” and expressed its regret over the error. Tesco confirmed that nobody has purchased the doll from the retailer – and that the company’s IT staff are currently trying to work out how to permanently remove the historic URL displaying the item on an old Tesco Direct webpage.

Tesco blamed the blunder on a third party seller, and said the page should been removed two months ago.

Ahead of Tesco’s statement, Ben Summerskill, the chief executive of gay rights charity Stonewall, said to PinkNews.co.uk: “This is like trying to sell ice to Eskimos. We can’t imagine why any woman would choose to buy an inflatable gay best friend when there are two million of the real thing already available in modern Britain and most of them are much better looking than Tesco’s pale imitation.”

The product is still available to purchase on Amazon and Ebay.

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A description of the doll on Ebay reads: “Inflatable doll in the design of a perfect gay best friend!

“Do all of your normal friends no longer find your petty problems or wardrobe dilemmas interesting? Or heaven forbid no longer give you an honest opinion on your outfit, you know it’s time to inflate yourself a Gay Best Friend!

“Once Inflated this PVC doll stands approx 50cm tall, but what he lacks in size, he makes up in fashion know-how and getting down on the dance floor!”

Meanwhile, the description on Amazon says:

“Can’t find the perfect friend to patiently listen to all your problems and give you advice!? Well here he is!! Once fully inflated this PVC doll stands at 50cm tall and looks like the perfect gay best friend. Everyone knows someone who is in need of a caring, stylish and funny friend!!! This is a hilarious gift! All of your girlies out there would love to have someone to patiently listen to you and give you advice.

All you need to do is blow him up and you will instantly have a new gay best friend! He loves to shop, loves to dance, always listens to you, gives great fashion advice and most importantly will always tell you if your bum looks big. This PVC doll comes packaged in the colour box as seen in the picture which makes this the perfect funny gift for your friend or colleague!”

PinkNews has approached both Amazon and Ebay for comment.