Diego Costa has insisted that if he leaves Chelsea, it will only be for former club Atletico Madrid – despite interest from China.
The 28-year-old Brazilian-born Spanish striker has enjoyed another excellent season with 21 goals for The Blues, helping them to the league title.
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But over the last 18-months, Costa has been strongly linked with a move to China and in January he was dropped from the squad by Antonio Conte – after telling them he would like to make a move to the Far East.
He apologised for his actions and was restored to the squad, and he now insists that he has no interest in moving to China and will stay at Chelsea, unless Atletico come in for him.
“I will only leave Chelsea for Atletico,” Costa told Spanish reporters after the FA Cup final, where he scored Chelsea’s goal in their 2-1 loss to Arsenal.
“If not, I will stay here. I’m not interested in other clubs.
“I have a contract and no intention of leaving, but if there are changes to be made that might reduce my chances, if the coach won’t count on me any more or is to give space for another striker, I know that I’ll have to leave.
“I will only leave Chelsea for Atletico…Everyone knows what my preferred club is, there’s nothing to hide.”
“Everyone knows what my preferred club is, there’s nothing to hide.”
On the back of his comments bookmakers have reacted by now making Chelsea the most likely place he will be playing next season, ahead of China and Atletico.
Despite Costa’s comments, it remains to be seen if he will remain – with The Blues looking at other strikers, and they are trying to strike a deal with Everton for their former striker Romelu Lukaku, which could cost them a club record and likely will be more than £80million.