Salif Diao

Last updated

Salif Diao
Sali Diao Arsenal v Stoke City FC.jpg
Diao playing for Stoke City in 2009
Personal information
Full nameSalif Alassane Diao
Date of birth (1977-02-10) 10 February 1977 (age 42)
Place of birth Kédougou, Senegal
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in) [1]
Playing position Defensive midfielder
Senior career*
1996–2000 Monaco 27 (0)
1996–1997SAS Épinal (loan) 2 (0)
2000–2002 Sedan 49 (0)
2002–2007 Liverpool 37 (1)
2005Birmingham City (loan) 2 (0)
2005–2006Portsmouth (loan) 11 (0)
2006–2007Stoke City (loan) 16 (0)
2007–2012 Stoke City 72 (1)
National team
2000–2009 Senegal 39 (4)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Salif Alassane Diao (born 10 February 1977) is a Senegalese former professional footballer who played as a defensive midfielder.

Association football Team field sport

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.


Diao moved from Senegal to France when he was seventeen and started his career at Monaco with whom he helped with the Trophée des Champions and Division 1. He failed to hold down a regular place at Monaco and moved to Sedan in 2000. Diao then had an impressive 2002 World cup with Senegal which attracted the attention of several Premier League sides. It was Liverpool who won the race and signed Diao for £5 million in 2002.

AS Monaco FC professional association football club based in Monaco

Association sportive de Monaco football club, commonly referred to as AS Monaco or Monaco, is a Monégasque football club that competes in Ligue 1, the top tier of French football. Founded in 1924, the team plays its home matches at the Stade Louis II in Fontvieille. The club is coached by Leonardo Jardim and captained by Radamel Falcao.

Trophée des Champions

The Trophée des Champions, is a French association football trophy contested in an annual match between the champions of Ligue 1 and the winners of the Coupe de France. It is equivalent to the Super Cups found in many countries.

Ligue 1 French professional league for association football clubs

Ligue 1, also called Ligue 1 Conforama for sponsorship reasons with Conforama, is a French professional league for men's association football clubs. At the top of the French football league system, it is the country's primary football competition. Administrated by the Ligue de Football Professionnel, Ligue 1 is contested by 20 clubs and operates on a system of promotion and relegation with Ligue 2.

His time at Liverpool was unsuccessful and was sent out on loan to Birmingham City, Portsmouth and Stoke City. He joined the latter Stoke permanently on a free transfer in 2007 and helped the club to promotion to the Premier League in 2008.

Birmingham City Football Club is a professional football club in Birmingham, England, which competes in the EFL Championship, the second tier of English football. Formed in 1875 as Small Heath Alliance, they became Small Heath in 1888, Birmingham in 1905, and Birmingham City in 1943.

Portsmouth F.C. Association football club

Portsmouth Football Club is an English professional association football club in Portsmouth, Hampshire, which plays in EFL League One, the third tier of English football. The club was founded on 5 April 1898 and home matches are played at Fratton Park in Milton, Portsmouth.

Stoke City F.C. Association football club

Stoke City Football Club is a professional football club based in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire. The team competes in the Championship, the second tier of English football. The club's nickname,'The Potters', is derived from the pottery industry in Stoke-on-Trent and their traditional home kit is a red and white vertically striped shirt. Stoke's home ground is the 30,089 all-seater, bet365 Stadium. Before the stadium was opened in 1997, the club was based at the Victoria Ground, which had been their home ground since 1878. Stoke's traditional rivals are Midlands clubs West Bromwich Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers whilst their local rivals are Port Vale with whom they contest the Potteries derby.



Diao was born in Kédougou, Tambacounda Region. He began his career in his native country before moving to France at the age of seventeen. He begin his professional career playing for Monaco in 1996 but did not feature for the club at all in the 1996–1997 season and was loaned out the Ligue 2 side SAS Épinal where he played 2 matches for the club. He returned to Monaco for the 1997–98 season where he 12 times in his second season at the club. he was also part of the AS Monaco side that won Division 1 in the 1999–2000 season. He also won a runner-up medal in the 2002 African Cup of Nations, where Senegal lost in extra time to Cameroon.

Kédougou Town in Senegal

Kédougou is a town in the Kédougou Region of south-eastern Senegal near the border with Mali and Guinea. It lies at an elevation of 547 feet above sea level.

Tambacounda Region Region in Senegal

Tambacounda, formerly known as Sénégal Orientale, is a region of Senegal. It used to be part of the Mali Empire before the borders were created to separate Mali from Senegal. Tambacounda is physically the largest of Senegal's 14 regions, but is sparsely populated and its economy lags behind the rest of the country. The department of Kédougou was separated from Tambacounda in 2008, and became a separate region.

SAS Épinal association football club

Stade Athletique Spinalien Épinal is a French football club based in the commune of Épinal.

Sedan Ardennes

In 2001, he signed for Sedan Ardennes. He played 32 games in all competitions in his first season at Sedan Ardennes in the 2001–02 season including 3 matches in the UEFA Cup. He made his first start of the on 28 July 2001 in their 1–1 draw away at Bastia. He made 22 appearances for Sedan in his second season at the club with an extra 2 games in the UEFA Cup. His last game for Sedan came in their 1–1 draw with FC Lorient on 6 April 2002 before joining English club Liverpool.

CS Sedan Ardennes association football club in France

Club Sportif Sedan Ardennes, commonly referred to as CS Sedan or simply Sedan, is a French association football club based in Sedan. The club was formed in 1919 and plays its home matches at the Stade Louis Dugauguez located within the city. Sedan is sponsored by Invicta France and Caisse d'Épargne, the latter being one of France's largest banks. Macron are Sedan's current kit supplier.

SC Bastia French association football club based in Bastia

Sporting Club Bastiais is a French association football club based in Bastia on the island of Corsica. The club plays in Championnat National 3, the fifth tier of French football, after being demoted four levels from Ligue 1 in 2017 due to financial difficulties after playing in the first tier for five seasons. The club plays its home matches at the Stade Armand Cesari located within the city. Bastia is managed by Stéphane Rossi and captained by defender Gilles Cioni.

FC Lorient association football club

Football Club Lorient-Bretagne Sud is a French association football club based in Lorient, Brittany. The club was founded in 1926 and will play in Ligue 2 in the 2017-18 season after relegation from Ligue 1 in the 2016-17 season. Lorient plays its home matches at the stade Yves Allainmat, former mayor of the city located within the city. The stadium is surnamed Stade du Moustoir because of his location within the city. The team is managed by Christophe Pélissier.


He was signed by former Liverpool manager Gérard Houllier from French club CS Sedan Ardennes for £5 million (€7.5m) just before the 2002 World Cup in South Korea and Japan. He helped Senegal reach the quarter finals, most notably in scoring a memorable goal against Denmark in the first round, although he was subsequently red-carded.

Gérard Houllier French association football manager

Gérard Paul Francis Houllier OBE is a French football manager and former player. His past clubs include Paris Saint-Germain, Lens and Liverpool, with whom he won the FA Cup, League Cup, UEFA Cup and UEFA Super Cup in 2001. He then guided Olympique Lyonnais to two French titles, before announcing his resignation on 25 May 2007. He became manager of Aston Villa in September 2010. He also coached the France national team between 1992 and 1993. He assisted Aimé Jacquet in the 1998 FIFA World Cup, was part of UEFA's and FIFA's Technical Committee in the 2002 and 2006 FIFA World Cup finals, and technical director for the French Football Federation during the 2010 finals. In June 2011, he stepped down from club coaching, leaving his managerial role at Aston Villa, following frequent hospitalisation over heart problems.

2002 FIFA World Cup 2002 edition of the FIFA World Cup

The 2002 FIFA World Cup was the 17th FIFA World Cup, the quadrennial world championship for men's national football teams organized by FIFA. It was held from 31 May to 30 June 2002 at sites in South Korea and Japan, with its final match hosted by Japan at International Stadium in Yokohama.

Senegal national football team national association football team

The Senegal national football team, nicknamed the Lions of Teranga, is the national association football team of Senegal and is controlled by the Senegalese Football Federation.

At the club, he tended to be used out of position by Houllier, often played at centre back or full back and as a result never had the chance to demonstrate whether he was capable of playing a central midfield role for the club, although the evidence did suggest he was somewhat out of his depth. His first Liverpool goal came against Spartak Moscow in the Champions League. [2] He scored a total of three goals, only one coming in the league, in a 1–0 win at Leeds United in October 2002. [3] He was left out of Liverpool's squad for the victorious 2003 Football League Cup Final [4] despite playing often in the earlier rounds, including the semi-final first leg against Sheffield United. [5]

Diao was played in his correct position by Rafa Benítez but several poor displays saw him displaced by Xabi Alonso notably after a 4–2 win at Fulham. Liverpool were 2–0 down when Diao was substituted, he had been at fault for one of the goals Fulham scored whilst attempting a bizarre back heel. Despite not having featured for months Diao was present in Istanbul when Liverpool won the Champions League in 2005. He appeared only once in the campaign, coming on as a substitute away at Olympiacos in the group stage. [6] It was during the 2004–05 season that Diao scored his last Liverpool goal against Millwall in the League Cup, [7] and he played his last game for Liverpool at Norwich City in January 2005.

In January 2005 Birmingham City took Diao, who had struggled to make Liverpool's first team, on loan for the rest of the season but he had his spell at Birmingham ended by injury almost immediately. The arrival of Rafael Benítez and defensive midfielder Mohamed Sissoko, signalled the end of his Liverpool career. Althougu Sissoko was branded the "new Vieira" by Benítez, Diao had received this same tag from Houllier upon his arrival at Liverpool.

Diao was not issued a squad number by Liverpool for the 2005–06 season, with his number 15 being given to new signing Peter Crouch. He joined Portsmouth in August 2005 on a season long loan but spent much of the season out injured. At the end of the season Pompey manager Harry Redknapp decided not to take up the option to sign him permanently because of his injury-proneness. In July 2006 Diao was taken on trial by Premiership side Charlton Athletic. He failed a medical at the club, thus ending his chances of signing. [8]

Stoke City

On 10 October 2006 Diao joined Stoke City on loan. [9] He made his debut for Stoke four days latter in a 4–0 win away at Leeds United. [10] He has been a consistent player for Stoke, holding the team together, slowing down the tempo and speed of the game. It is thought that the revival of Stoke City during the 2006–07 season was in a large part due to Salif's hard-working performances. On 25 January 2007, his contract at Stoke was extended until the end of the season. [11] At the end of the 2006–07 season Diao was released by Liverpool and was expected to sign for Stoke but did not sign a deal with the club because he was worried about his fitness levels. [12] [13]

He eventually signed permanently for Stoke on a one and a half-year deal in December 2007. [14] [15] Diao put in some decent performances for Stoke including games against former club Liverpool and man of the match performances against Chelsea and Sunderland. In June 2009 he was offered a new one-year contract to stay at the Britannia Stadium, which he accepted. [16] He scored his first goal for the club in an away win at Portsmouth in February 2010. It was only Diao's second ever league goal and with his first coming six years before.

I didn't know he'd scored the goal until I got back in the dressing room. I couldn't believe it, I'll have to watch it on television to believe it.

Stoke manager Tony Pulis in shock over Diao's goal. [17]

Diao left Stoke after he rejected a new contract which would have given a joint role as a club ambassador and player. [18] However Diao changed his mind and agreed to sign a new contract with Stoke. [19] Diao cited his respect for the club and of Tony Pulis for his decision to re-sign. [20] During the 2010–11 season Diao played eleven times for Stoke and was an unused substitute in the 2011 FA Cup Final. [21] In the 2011–12 season Diao has been used sparingly by Pulis with Diao playing mostly in the UEFA Europa League and is set to leave the club at the end of the campaign after turning down a coaching role. [22] He left Stoke at the end of the 2011–12 season. [23]

International career

Diao has appeared 39 times for Senegal, scoring four goals in the process since 2000, including a strike against Denmark at the 2002 FIFA World Cup after a series of quick passes by his team mates to set him up. He was later sent off in the same match was a high tackle. Diao was in the Senegal squad that went to the 2002 African Cup of Nations were Senegal finished second after losing in the final to Cameroon and was part of the Senegal side that went to the 2004 African Cup of Nations.

He was also in the side that reached the quarter finals of the 2002 FIFA World Cup and played games including their 1–0 win over then current champions France, as well as scoring in their 1–1 draw with Denmark before being sent off which meant he missed their next two games but returned for their quarter final exit to Turkey. He has also been involved in Senegal's qualification campaigns for the past three World Cups in 2002, 2006 and 2010. After Senegal failed to qualify for the 2010 World Cup Senegal fans went on a rampage, Diao, along with Stoke City team-mates Abdoulaye Faye and Ibrahima Sonko, were caught up in crowd trouble in Dakar. [24]

Personal life

Diao a founder of non-profit organisation, Sport4Charity. [25] He is also involved with Caap-Afrika. [26]

Career statistics


Source: [27]

ClubSeasonLeagueFA CupLeague CupEuropeTotal
Monaco 1996–97 Division 1 0000000000
1997–98 Division 1120000000120
1998–99 Division 1140000030170
1999–2000 Division 11000001020
Épinal (loan) 1996–97 Division 2 20000020
Sedan Ardennes 2000–01 Division 1270101030320
2001–02 Division 1220100020250
Liverpool 2002–03 Premier League 261204081402
2003–04 Premier League3000103070
2004–05 Premier League80003130141
Birmingham City (loan) 2004–05 Premier League20000020
Portsmouth (loan) 2005–06 Premier League1101000120
Stoke City 2006–07 Championship 2702000290
2007–08 Championship1101000120
2008–09 Premier League2000010210
2009–10 Premier League1613000191
2010–11 Premier League802010110
2011–12 Premier League60001070140
Career total21621301213012714


Source: [28]

Senegal national team

International goals

Scores and results list Senegal's goal tally first. [28]
1.4 February 2002 Stade Modibo Kéïta, Bamako, Mali Flag of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.svg (1997-2003).svg  DR Congo 1–02–0 2002 Africa Cup of Nations
2.7 February 2002Stade Modibo Kéïta, Bamako, MaliFlag of Nigeria.svg  Nigeria 2–12–1 ( a.e.t. )2002 Africa Cup of Nations
3.6 June 2002 Daegu World Cup Stadium, Daegu, South Korea Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark 1–11–1 2002 FIFA World Cup
4.31 May 2003 Stade Léopold Sédar Senghor, Dakar, Senegal Flag of Cape Verde.svg  Cape Verde 2–12–1 Friendly



Source: [29]



Stoke City

Related Research Articles

El Hadji Diouf Senegalese footballer

El Hadji Ousseynou Diouf is a Senegalese retired footballer. Throughout his career, Diouf played as a winger or a forward.

Peter Crouch English association football player

Peter James Crouch is an English professional footballer who plays as a striker for Premier League club Burnley. He was capped 42 times by the England national team between 2005 and 2010, scoring 22 goals for his country in that time, and appearing at two World Cups.

Jermaine Pennant English footballer

Jermaine Lloyd Pennant is an English footballer who last played as a winger for Billericay Town. Pennant has made over 300 appearances for 15 clubs, and has scored 24 goals to date.

Tony Pulis Welsh football manager

Anthony Richard Pulis is a Welsh football manager and former footballer who most recently managed Middlesbrough.

Vincent de Paul Péricard is a French former professional football player, who played in France with Saint-Étienne and in Italy with Juventus before moving to England, where he played for several clubs. He has also played for the France U21 team.

Kenwyne Jones Trinidad and Tobago footballer

Kenwyne Joel Jones CM is a Trinidadian retired professional footballer who played as a striker. He began his football career with Joe Public in his native Trinidad and Tobago. He moved to W Connection in 2002, and he was a utility player in the Trinidad and Tobago team in 2003 against Finland. In 2004, he joined Southampton, where he was converted to a striker. He was later loaned to Sheffield Wednesday and Stoke City during the 2004–05 season.

Anthony Pulis footballer

Anthony James Pulis is a Welsh former footballer who is currently the head coach of Saint Louis FC.

Abdoulaye Faye Senegalese footballer

Abdoulaye Diagne-Faye, known as Abdoulaye Faye, is a Senegalese former footballer who played as a defender.

Amdy Faye Senegalese footballer

Amdy Moustapha Faye is a Senegalese former footballer who played as a defensive midfielder and could also play as a centre back.

Ibrahima Sonko Senegalese footballer

Ibrahima Sonko is a retired Senegalese footballer who played as a centre back.

Michael William Eric Tonge is an English footballer who plays as a midfielder for EFL League Two club Port Vale.

Marc Wilson (Irish footballer) Irish footballer

Marc David Wilson is an Irish professional footballer who plays as a defender or midfielder for Bolton Wanderers in the EFL Championship.

Jonathan Walters association football player

Jonathan Ronald Walters is a former professional footballer who played as a striker.

Asmir Begović association football player

Asmir Begović is a Bosnian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Premier League club AFC Bournemouth and the Bosnia and Herzegovina national team, for which he is vice-captain.

Mamady Sidibé is a Malian former footballer who played as a forward.

Andy Wilkinson English footballer

Andrew Gordon Wilkinson is an English former professional footballer who played as a defender.

The 2009–10 season was Stoke City's second season in the Premier League and the 54th in the top tier of English football.

The 2006–07 season was Stoke City's 100th in the Football League, the 40th in the second tier and third in the Championship.

The 2010–11 season was Stoke City's third season in the Premier League and the 55th in the top tier of English football.


  1. "Player Profiles Salif Diao". Stoke City F.C. Archived from the original on 18 March 2012.
  2. "Liverpool trounce Spartak". BBC. 2 October 2002. Retrieved 3 November 2009.
  3. "Liverpool go top". 19 October 2002. Retrieved 12 December 2007.
  4. "Liverpool lift Worthington Cup". BBC. 2 March 2003. Retrieved 8 October 2018.
  5. "Blades cut down Liverpool". BBC. 8 January 2003. Retrieved 8 October 2018.
  6. "Olympiakos 1–0 Liverpool". BBC. 28 September 2004. Retrieved 14 August 2009.
  7. "Millwall 0–3 Liverpool". BBC. 26 October 2004. Retrieved 26 October 2009.
  8. "Diao fails Charlton medical". LFC Online. 27 July 2006. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  9. "Diao completes Stoke loan switch". BBC Sport. 10 October 2006.
  10. "Leeds 0–4 Stoke". BBC Sport. 14 October 2006.
  11. "Stoke extend loan deal for Diao". BBC Sport. 23 January 2007.
  12. "Pulis still hopes for Diao return". BBC Sport. 28 November 2007.
  13. "Scholes confident of Diao signing". BBC Sport. 29 November 2007.
  14. "Diao joy at Stoke return". Sky Sports. 11 December 2007. Retrieved 1 June 2008.
  15. "Stoke City complete Diao signing". BBC. BBC Sport. 10 December 2007. Retrieved 21 February 2010.
  16. "Stoke offer new contract to Diao". BBC Sport. 2 June 2009. Retrieved 2 June 2009.
  17. "Salif Diao winner shocks Stoke City manager Tony Pulis". BBC Sport. 21 February 2010.
  18. "'Diao's Departure Has Not Helped' – Pulis". 21 August 2010. Archived from the original on 16 August 2010.
  19. "Pulis Delighted With Diao Return". 31 August 2010. Archived from the original on 5 September 2010.
  20. Edwards, John (31 August 2010). "'Tony Pulis is more than a manager to me': Salif Diao pens two-year deal to stay with Stoke". Daily Mail. London. Retrieved 22 October 2011.
  21. "An African presence in FA Cup final". CAF. Retrieved 22 October 2011.
  22. "Diao to leave Stoke at end of season". The Sentinel. Retrieved 4 April 2012.
  23. "FREE TRANSFER LIST 2011/12" (PDF). Premier League. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 June 2012. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
  24. "Diao recounts Senegal ordeal". BBC Sport. 15 October 2008.
  25. "About Salif Diao". 16 May 2011. Archived from the original on 12 June 2011.
  26. "Salif's Big Match". 16 May 2011. Archived from the original on 26 September 2011.
  27. "Salif Diao". Soccerbase. Retrieved 8 April 2014.
  28. 1 2 "Diao, Salif". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 6 June 2011.
  29. "Salif Diao: African Legend of the Week". Goal. 6 April 2017. Retrieved 4 June 2017.