Ex-Liverpool striker regrets snubbing Manchester United and Barcelona

El Hadji Diouf
El Hadji Diouf

Former Senegal forward, El Hadji Diouf, has revealed his regeret over joining Liverpool ahead of the likes of Manchester United and Barcelona.

Diouf, 38, was Africa’s hottest property after starring at the 2002 FIFA World Cup in Korea/Japan.

The skilful forward led his team to the quarter-final of the competition, beating the reigning champions France.

Diouf would eventually join the Reds but struggled in his two years there.

He managed just three goals in three years before heading for Bolton Wanderers.

The Senegalese international has never hidden his hatred for the Merseyside club since the unsuccessful spell.

“I can say today that the shirt that I regret wearing the most was Liverpool’s because if I were to do that part of my career again, I would have gone to FC Barcelona or Manchester United. At the time, they wanted me too,” he told French outlet RMC (via GetFootballNewsFrance.com).

Diouf has a particularly poor relationship with Steven Gerrard and has made his feelings on the club legend clear on a number of occasions.

“When I arrived I showed him he was nothing at all. He was nothing at all,” he previously said.

“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.”

Gerrard fired back saying he had ‘no respect’ for the player during his underwhelming spell, while former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has been even more critical in his assessment.

“He has one of the worst strike rates of any forward in Liverpool history.

“He’s the only no.9 ever to go through a whole season without scoring. He was always the last one to get picked in training.”

Diouf subsequently had spells at Sunderland, Blackburn, Rangers, Leeds, Doncaster and Malaysia.

Considering his career path since that move to Liverpool, one can only wonder, if he did choose to sign for Manchester United or Barcelona, would he have performed any better? The player clearly thinks so.