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'He is a Didier Drogba' – Diouf compares Marseille’s Dieng with Chelsea and Cote d’Ivoire legend

19:01 BST 21/09/2021
Drogba, Dieng
The former Liverpool player talked up the talent of the forward likening him to the former Blues hero

El Hadji Diouf has likened Olympique Marseille striker Bamba Dieng to Cote d’Ivoire and Chelsea great Didier Drogba.

The 21-year-old Senegal prospect has been in fine form for the Phocaeans in the 2021-22 campaign – finding the net thrice in three games for Jorge Sampaoli’s men.

He propelled the Ligue 1 side to a 2-0 triumph over Rennes at Stade Velodrome on Sunday, prompting Diouf to compare him to two-time African Player of the Year winner Drogba.

"I knew him with the national youth team. He is a striker, a Didier Drogba. All he knows how to do is score goals,” Diouf said in an interview with Canal+ Afrique which was monitored by Rmcsport.

“I watched him with Diambars, and he was not far from being one of the top scorers in the Senegalese league.

“He is a young person with a future. The Senegal team, too, may have found its great striker.

“All I have to say is that he keeps his head on his shoulders, that he continues to work.

“If he has three opportunities, he can convert two. He's a striker who ends up in the box."

Manager Sampaoli had showered praise on Dieng having scored a brace in Marseille’s 2-0 triumph at AS Monaco.

"For me, Dieng is not a surprise, otherwise I would not have put him," he told media.

“He has qualities that we see on a daily basis, to play in spaces. It was chosen for this explosiveness and this ability to hurt the opponent's back. He has great potential."

Born in Pikine, Senegal, Dieng began his professional career with Senegal Premier League outfit Diambars – where he scored 12 goals in the first 14 games of his debut season.

He continued in that blistering form to become the top scorer of the 2019-20 campaign.

His goalscoring exploits attracted the Ligue 1 side who signed him for an undisclosed fee on October 5, 2020. He made a scoring debut in the club’s 2-0 Coupe de France defeat of Auxerre four months later.

Barring any injury worries, Dieng could be called up for the Lions of Teranga’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations campaign.