Diniyev played football as a midfielder. His club career included spells in the USSR, and later Russia, and finally back to Azerbaijan, where he ended his career with Dynamo Baku. He competed 16 times for the Azerbaijani national team, gaining no international caps with the USSR before independence. Following a period as a youth coach, Diniyev moved into club management, first with FK Qarabağ and then Kapaz PFC.
Diniyev (right) during a press conference after, match Kazakhstan - Azerbaijan
In November 2005, he impressed the AFFA sufficiently to be awarded with the national team job, promising to restructure the squad with an emphasis on youth and to help turn Azerbaijan into a credible force within UEFA competition. Replacing Vagif Sadygov, Diniyev's first game in charge was a friendly against Ukraine in Baku at the Tofig Bakhramov Stadium; the result was 0-0, a minor success against stronger opposition.