Chelsea striker Diego Costa has apologised for the bib-throwing incident that called into question his relationship with Jose Mourinho, but says he avoided punishment because “the dressing room loves me”.
Spain international Costa was demoted to the bench for a 0-0 draw at Tottenham last month and was caught on camera seemingly flinging his warm-up bib towards Mourinho when it became apparent he would not be brought on.
That has led to persistent rumours of a rift between the two, while Costa has been linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge.
However, the Brazil-born striker has insisted he and Mourinho have a good relationship and denied intentionally launching the bib at his manager, while confirming his commitment to the Premier League champions.
“People have made a party about this,” he told IBTimes. “If I want to throw the bib at him it would have been impossible to fail because I was very close.
“But anyway the attitude was not good. It was disrespectful not only to him but to my team-mates. But as the dressing room loves me nothing happens.
“It seems the English media want me to leave England as soon as possible. Because it’s not normal what they say. But I do not speak English yet so the truth is that I do not hear what they say.
“When things are going well people put you in heaven and when things goes wrong they put you in hell. But the truth is that I’m happy here. Every day I am more settled.”
Costa scored 20 league goals en route to Chelsea winning the title last season, but has netted just three in a disappointing second campaign.
His drop in form has coincided with Chelsea’s dramatic fall from grace, with the team just two points above the relegation zone, having won only four of 15 matches.
Costa knows his form has not been good enough but backed Mourinho to stay on as manager, adding: “I don’t need someone to tell me that I’m not having a great season. I know it and it is normal that the manager tries to find different alternatives to win games.
“We know that the manager is going to stay here until end of season. Fans like him so much, the board respect him and the players know that he is very important for us.
“Despite things not going well he is not to blame. One thing is when one thing doesn’t work but when four or five players are not playing it is more difficult. The manager has been fighting and encouraging us to turn this around.”
Chelsea are away to surprise leaders Leicester City in the Premier League on Monday.