EL HADJI DIOUF
Gerrard: El Hadji Diouf reawakens dispute with ex-Liverpool captain
In an interview with the BBC, the former Liverpool player again hit out at the ex-Reds skipper, saying he "never did anything for his country".
In an interview with the BBC on Monday, ex-Senegalese international El Hadji Diouf reignited his war of words with former Liverpool team-mate Steven Gerrard.
Gerrard and Diouf share an unfriendly relationship that dates back to the retired winger's days at Anfield, from 2002 to 2005.
"Gerrard never did anything for his country"
The two-time African Footballer of the Year claimed that Gerrard was a failure for his country, declaring: "'Stevie G' was a very good player. People like him in Liverpool but he never did anything for his country.”
Diouf also stated that Senegal is "bigger than Liverpool".
“I am Mr El Hadji Diouf, Mr Senegal but he is Mr Liverpool and Senegal is bigger than Liverpool and he has to know that.”
This follows his claims made eight months ago, when the Senegalese argued that, back in 2002, when he joined Liverpool from Lens, Gerrard was “nothing at all”.
The feud between the two began in 2007, when Gerrard wrote about the Senegalese in his autobiography.
"Being around Melwood and Anfield I knew which players were hungry, which players had Liverpool at heart. Diouf was just interested in himself," stated the ex-Liverpool captain.
Diouf counter-attacked five years later, avowing that Gerrard was "jealous" of him.
"Gerrard was jealous of me back then as I had the world at my feet. There's no one more selfish... he doesn't care about anyone else," said Diouf back in 2013.
However, the dispute reignited in 2015, when the Senegalese claimed that Gerrard "has never liked black people", which the Englishman immediately rebuffed.
Diouf arrived at Liverpool after playing a starring role in Senegal’s run at the 2002 World Cup. However, his days at the Premiere League were stained by his controversial behaviors.
He left Liverpool in 2005, after scoring just six goals in 79 appearances, continuing his career in Britain with stints at Bolton Wanderers, Sunderland, Blackburn Rovers, Doncaster Rovers, Leeds United and a brief time at Rangers.
From his days in the UK, perhaps he is best remembered for spitting at a Celtic fan, confronting match officials and for his disputes with Gerrard and Jamie Carragher.
"I have got character and I want people to respect me.
"I am an easy target. It's easy to talk about El Hadji Diouf and I let them talk but I know in my heart I am a good guy. My family know, my population knows, my continent knows I am a good guy and that's the best thing. The rest is not my problem," Diouf told the BBC.
A man of politics
Diouf, now living in Dakar, works as a government goodwill ambassador and adviser on sport to President Macky Sall, as well as running his own sports newspaper business in Dakar.
"My life is about sport but the government cannot do everything alone, they need help from people like me.
"The president believes in me and that's why when I finished playing football, he called me and told me he wants me to help because the young generation believe in me. I am an example to them.
"We have a country to build, a continent to build and why not be involved in politics tomorrow?" he declared.
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