Chelsea striker Diego Costa is set to scupper his club’s transfer plans by telling former club Atletico Madrid that he intends on signing for them in January.
According to Spanish news outlet Mundo Deportivo (via the Sun), Atletico’s transfer ban has not put Costa off seeking a move to the Spanish side. The Court of Arbitration for Sport has upheld FIFA’s transfer ban on Atletico meaning they are unable to sign players until January 2018.
However, an alternative option has been considered which would see Atletico sign the 28-year-old in the summer and then loan him to a Chinese club until January.
The Blues are reportedly unhappy with Costa’s latest thoughts about the move, given that selling one of their prized assets would free up funds for a busy summer of transfer activity. Chelsea have been frequently linked with an £80m move for Romelu Lukaku, a player they previously sold to Everton for £28m back in 2014.
Chelsea rejected a £76m bid for Costa from Chinese club Tianjin Quanjin in January and are therefore commanding a significant fee in order to help them in their pursuit of luring Lukaku back to Stamford Bridge.
Diego Costa: “Joining Atletico would be beautiful, but I need to think about it. It’s World Cup year, I can’t be pitchside for 4 months”
— Tancredi Palmeri (@tancredipalmeri) June 7, 2017
Costa’s career at Chelsea is all but over after the Spain international recently revealed that Antonio Conte told him he was surplus to requirements via text.
“Antonio Conte has told me by message that I will not continue with Chelsea and that’s it,” Costa said, as quoted by the Sun. “My relationship with the coach has been bad this season and it is clear that he does not want me on the team.
“I guess I have had such a bad season that I can’t continue. Right now I’m a Chelsea player because I have a contract, but the coach does not want me there. I have to find a new team.”