Stoke City captain Ryan Shawcross says it was “fantastic” to keep Chelsea striker Diego Costa quiet as the Premier League champions suffered yet another defeat.
Marko Arnautovic scored the only goal of the game as Stoke inflicted a seventh defeat of the league season so far on Chelsea, winning 1-0 at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday in the absence of the visitors’ banned manager Jose Mourinho.
Costa was kept on the fringes of the action by the home side’s defence and Shawcross was delighted to have triumphed in his personal battle with the Brazilian-born Spain international.
“Diego Costa gets in your face, he wants to bully you so you have to stand up to him,” he told Sky Sports.
“He is a fantastic player who plays close to the line, so to keep him quiet is fantastic.
“We have a fantastic spirit and a good team now. Look how many Champions League winners’ medals we’ve got in the squad now.”
Costa was caught up in controversy after the match with reports that a steward had made an allegation of assault against the former Atletico Madrid forward.
The 27-year-old appeared to stand on the steward’s foot after retrieving the ball for a throw-in, though a Chelsea spokesman was quoted by some outlets as describing the incident as “utter nonsense”.
Stoke were unavailable for comment on the incident when contacted by Omnisport.