Diouf named Africa's best again

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SENEGAL star El Hadji Diouf has been crowned African Footballer of the Year for the second successive occasion.

The Liverpool attacker was rewarded for his exploits in playing a pivotal role in Senegal's stunning World Cup in the Far East last summer.

Diouf fought off fierce competition from compatriot Papa Bouba Diop and Egyptian starlet Ahmed 'Mido' Hossam.

Liverpool's assistant manager Phil Thompson was delighted Diouf picked up the award and praised the African for the manner in which he had adapted to life at Anfield.

"We are very pleased for him," Thompson told the club's official website. "He is very high profile in Africa but he is only just starting to show everybody here the ability he has.

"It has been difficult at times because he is still very young but he is picking up the language all the time and settling in nicely.

"He is absolutely determined to succeed and that comes across in his play. His work-rate is phenomenal. From a fans point of view that is the first thing you want to see.

"It has taken him a while to settle down but he has got into the swing of things and he has become a crowd favourite since just before Christmas."

Diouf's international colleague Tony Sylva was named Goalkeeper of the Year while Mido collected the consolation of Young Player of the Year.