El Hadji Diouf has labelled his former Liverpool teammate Steven Gerrard a racist.
Diouf and Gerrard played together at Anfield between 2002 and 2005 but in his autobiography ‘My Story’ which is being serialised in the Daily Mail the LA Galaxy midfielder had some strong words to say about Diouf.
“I don’t really want to waste time thinking about El Hadji Diouf but it’s worth highlighting his wasted seasons at Liverpool as an example of how it can all go wrong,” Gerrard wrote in his new book.
“We had finished as runners-up to Manchester United the season before and a combination of Diouf, Salif Diao and Bruno Cheyrou was supposed to drive us to the title. It was probably the biggest waste of £18m in Liverpool’s history.
“We finished the season in fifth place and Diouf had sealed his place at the top of the list of Liverpool signings I liked least. It seemed to me that Diouf had no real interest in football and that he cared nothing about Liverpool. For example, the way he spat a huge globule of gunky phlegm at a Celtic fan in a Uefa Cup match at Parkhead in March 2003 summed up his contemptuous and spiteful demeanour.
“A few people have since asked me if I saw any comparison between Diouf and Mario Balotelli – and I’ve always said no. I’ve got respect for Balotelli; I’ve got none for Diouf.”
Diouf, who currently plays for Sabah in the Malaysian Premier League, has now hit back at Gerrard and claims the Liverpool legend is just jealous of him.
“We all saw how he made life difficult for Mario Balotelli in Liverpool,” Diouf told Senegalese radio station Radio Future Media, according to Le10 Sport.
“I warned him. Liverpool are not a team that welcomes black unless they are British. Otherwise, you have no chance. This is common knowledge.
“Gerrard has never liked black people. When I was in Liverpool, I showed him that I was black, I’m not English, but I will not let him walk all over me. All the time I spent there, he never dared to look me in the eye.
“Gerrard is just jealous. What I have done in football, he did not. When I came to Liverpool, I came up with the status of boss and he lives there. I am respected in world football, the greatest football experts have appointed me among the seven best players in the World Cup, the top 100 players of the century. Several big players do not belong. Everywhere I go out of my country, they worship me. [Gerrard], wherever he goes outside his city of Liverpool, will be insulted.”
Diouf joined Liverpool after starring at the 2002 World Cup in South Korea and Japan but only stayed for two seasons after scoring six goals.
The two-time African footballer of the year had spells in England with Bolton, Sunderland, Blackburn, Doncaster and Leeds before moving to Malaysia in 2014.