Atletico Madrid have “made a breakthrough” in negotiations to sign Chelsea striker Diego Costa, Sky Sports have reported.
The disillusioned forward has moved his family to Madrid amid reports that a deal to return to the Spanish capital could be close to completion.
A fee of around €60m has been touted, although it remains to be seen whether Chelsea are willing to sell for a reduced price.
The Premier League champions had originally refused to negotiate, and insisted that Costa return to the club and respect the terms of his contract.
But the Spain international has refused, instead uprooting to Madrid with his Chelsea future now seemingly non-existent.
However, Atletico president Enrique Cerezo has dismissed reports that a deal could be on the verge of completion.
“If his family is moving [to Madrid], I do not know,” he told AS. “What I know is that Costa is a Chelsea player and until January, there is time to talk to his club and with whoever else. We are not going to do anything until January.”
Atletico were unable to secure Costa’s signature in the summer transfer window, although the club cannot play new signings until January due to a FIFA-imposed transfer ban.
The 28-year-old was Chelsea’s top scorer last season, but was informed by Antonio Conte via text prior to pre-season that he was not in the club’s plans for the new campaign.