Inspired by George Weah's rise to the seat of presidency in Liberia, former Liverpool star El Hajdi Diouf is aiming at re-writing the political history of Senegal to become the first footballer to become president of the West African country.
Diouf, a member of the Senegal squad that made history in 2002 by taking the Terenga Lions to their first ever World Cup, the former stylish Sunderland man wants to be Senegal’s next president.
Once described as a “sewer rat” by Cardiff boss Neil Warnock, the former striker played in England for the likes of Liverpool, Sunderland, Blackburn, Bolton and Leeds.
Diouf, who hanged up his boots in 2015, is set to take the political stage of Senegal by storm as he takes his career to the next level.
Perhaps inspired by George Weah, who became the 25th President of Liberia last month, the 37-year-old has set out plans to become a politician.
Diouf claims it’s because he wants to be a “soldier of the youngsters.”
Reported by FourFourTwo magazine, the forward said: “I am looking after myself and my family. For many years I used to think about football but I have a new career and it is a political career.”
“I have taken the decision to do politics because I have people waiting for me to change things in my country and I’m ready to do that because I want to be the soldier of the youngsters.
“My future is defined. In the next two years I’ll be joining politics, because I know from that point I can change a lot in football.
“I have a lot of passion for politics, and I have people in Senegal who are mentoring me. That is the future for me, because a lot of Senegalese people are able to listen to me.
“I took high-level coaching courses, but decided not to continue since I have better plans for things I want to do.”
Diouf has been convicted for driving without a license, has several incidents of spitting, charged with assault and went AWOL while at Blackburn, but despite all these traits, the reformed Diouf believes he is well carved to be in the political driving seat for his country.