Senegal teammate offers sad explanation for struggles of Stoke City outcast Mame Biram Diouf

Stoke's Mame Biram Diouf celebrates scoring their second goal

Stoke City forward Mame Biram Diouf has had a tough time of late and his Senegal teammate Moussa Sow has delivered his verdict as to why.

Manchester City's Aleksandar Kolarov and Stoke's Mame Biram Diouf in actionStoke's Mame Biram Diouf in action

Diouf started well when he signed from German side Hannover 96 scoring 12 goals in 28 games in his first season to add to the seven he scored during previous spells with Manchester United and Blackburn Rovers.

But his scoring exploits - who can forget that stunner against Manchester City - have waned in the two years since with just six goals in nearly 60 games across two seasons under Mark Hughes.

Last season was his worst to date for Stoke with a solitary goal to show in 28 appearances, mostly as sub and mostly as a winger rather than striker.

His struggles have perplexed many Potters fans who thought they had landed a player who would prove a real handful for opposition defences when they signed Diouf.

And his form at international level for Senegal has also dipped dramatically in the last two seasons.

Now Diouf's international teammate and fellow striker Moussa Sow has spoken out in defence of the goal shy Stoke forward and backed him to return to his best soon for club and country.

Alex FenerbahceMoussa Sow (right)

"He recently lost his mother and it is not easy to lose a person so important in his life," Sow told African media outlet Le Stade, as reported by Senego.

"For some time now he is a little discreet but it is someone who fights a lot. In club or national team, he gives the best of himself.

"As I said earlier, his situation is not alarming.

"I am convinced that Mame Biram will come back stronger and make a good season next year and will be with us in August to score goals.

"He is a fighter."

Stoke's Mame Biram Diouf celebrates scoring their second goalDiouf can return to his best for club and country says international teammate

The death of Diouf's mother came in traumatic circumstances after she was killed in a stampede during the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia in 2015, as reported at the time by the BBC.

Should the powerful striker prove Sow right and return to his best form, it could be like a new signing for Hughes who looks set to lose out-of-favour Spanish forward Joselu after he was linked with a permanent return to Spain with Malaga.

Another Stoke forward, Bojan, also looks set to leave with a return to La Liga on the cards.

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