Diego Costa’s imminent move to Atletico Madrid from Chelsea has drifted out of the news as of late after months of coverage, except perhaps for a few passing shots from the Blues fans at his hilarious reaction to Michy Batshuayi’s winner against his new club in the Champions League.
Now, the Spain international will have to focus on settling in at Atletico among an established range of strikers including Fernando Torres, Angel Correa and Kevin Gameiro.
Manager Diego Simeone has voiced similar warnings that Costa should not expect to simply walk into his team and lead the line, even in his considerable praise for the returning striker.
“Of the players who could bring us closer to the top, Diego Costa was the chosen one,” Simeone confessed to the Spanish ’El Larguero’ radio station. “A different player of his quality maybe we could not afford to pay. The fans want to see the Costa who left us.”
“Of the players we have had, he is the one who most surprised me. He brings together goals, hard work, effort and leadership. I imagine Costa and Vitolo finding it tough to get into the team. I look at who we have at the moment. They will have to work to earn their places.”
As Simeone mentioned, Costa has already played for Atletico. In a four-year spell in which he scored forty-three goals in ninety-four appearances, the Spaniard certainly endeared himself to the fans. Simeone also hints that he might benefit their newer hot property, Antoine Griezmann.
“I whip myself if a player does not give the maximum they can give.” Simeone exclaimed.
“With Griezmann that is not the case, he is an outstanding player and has spoiled us. If he does not score there is a gap. [Last summer] I was convinced he would not leave. I like him a lot.”