Most of the football world was paying tribute to Steven Gerrard yesterday after the legendary Liverpool midfielder announces his retirement but El Hadji Diouf decided to launch another fierce attack on his former teammate and claimed ‘he was afraid to look in my eyes.’
The former Senegal forward spent two years at Liverpool between 2002 to 2005 but his time at Anfield was surrounded by a number of unpleasant incidents. The former Liverpool forward is the only Liverpool number 9 in history to go an entire season without scoring a single goal.
He was accused of spitting at fans several times during his times at Liverpool and was even fined by the club for spitting at Celtic fans during a televised UEFA Champions League game. The offence also led to a two-match ban from UEFA.
Diouf was previously accused of not caring about football by Gerrard in the midfielder’s autobiography and the pair never got on well at Anfield. Since his exit Diouf has regularly criticised Gerrard in the recent years.
And, speaking on French television last night, Diouf hit out at the veteran on French television by claiming that he was ‘nothing’ on the world stage.
According to the Daily Mail, Diouf said: ‘When I arrived I showed him he was nothing at all. He was nothing at all. I asked him to tell me in which big competition, Euros or World Cup, people think about him.’
Diouf explained that while he respected Gerrard for his performances on the pitch, he disliked him for the man he was off it.
‘I respect the player, very big player, but the man, I do not respect. And I told him, I let him know that.’ he said.
‘That is why he does not like me. He knows I say what I think, that when it is not right, no problem, I am up for it.’
‘He was afraid of looking into my eyes. He was afraid of talking to me. Let’s not forget when I arrived I did not ask for his shirt. He asked for my Senegal shirt for one of his mates.’
The former Senegal international is a retired footballer now whose only major honours in his career being the Scottish Premier League in 2011.