During his prime at Chelsea, Diego Costa was without doubt one of the best out and out forwards in the world game. Few had the power, determination and sheer nuisance ability than the Brazilian-born Spanish international.
A return to former club Atletico Madrid in the winter transfer window of 2018 was a blow to the Blues at the time, as he had just scored 20 top-flight goals for the south west London club the season before. Chelsea have struggled to really replace him, while Costa has struggled to make an impact at Atletico in his second stint.
Maybe Chelsea and Costa were a match made in heaven
There are times when players and clubs go together perfectly well. The two just seem to come together and it makes for great viewing. That was the case with Costa and Chelsea.
The forward enjoyed three very successful years with the Blues, winning the Premier league title on two occasions. Twice he scored 20 goals in the English top-flight, with his lowest goal tally being 12 in his middle season with the Blues, as the whole team struggled.
They say never go back
The saying about going back to an old relationship is never a good thing. There is never the same passion and fire. Unfortunately, Costa has not experienced a great second spell back in the Spanish capital where he was beloved the first time around.
A combined total of just six La Liga goals since his return is a disappointing one. Admittedly Atletico have limited his playing time, so he has not played a lot of football in that time.
However, he has just not looked like the same player that terrified English Premier League defences for three seasons. He doesn’t seem to have the same terrifying ability, although he does seem to retain the fiery personality, which will never go away. The fact that he received an eight-match ban for an assault on a referee in April proved that he is still as fiery as ever.
That living on the edge side to the forwards game was fine when he was scoring goals. In fact, it helped him at times to produce his best form. However, he is no longer scoring goals, so when he is silly on the pitch it is highlighted more.
At 30-years-old of age Diego Costa looks to be on a steep downward spiral. It is sad to see for a player who was once such a good Premier League performer.
Linked with a summer move to Qatar or China
Italian publication CalcioMercato are reporting that clubs from both Qatar are watching Costa’s situation ahead of a possible move next summer. It is not the first time Costa has been linked with a move.
In fact, this summer Wolves were odds as short as 1/10 to sign the forward. Everton were also linked with a move for the experienced striker. However, for whatever reason, the forward remained in the Spanish capital with Atletico.
If things continue in a similar vein for Costa in the Spanish capital, then it is easy to see the forward heading to Qatar or China. He is obviously not the player used to be during his days at Chelsea.
A Premier League return would be unlikely, as he would be a year older and most English top-flight clubs would no longer pay his big wages. It would be a shame to see Costa leave Spanish football with such a whimper. However, we will always have his exploits in his first spell at Atletico and his Chelsea career to remember how good a player he once was.
Will Diego Costa be leaving Atletico Madrid this summer?
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