It is now old news that Diego Costa has been shown the door at Chelsea…but, despite several links and flirtations with other clubs, he is yet to actually walk through it and out of Stamford Bridge. Here, FantasySports.co.uk takes a look at where the Spanish front man may end up as the 2017/18 season draws ever closer :
A C MILAN
Milan are in the market for a centre forward and have held talks with Costa’s agent, but have yet to approach the player or indeed Chelsea to table an offer or discuss the fee, with Chelsea apparently valuing the player around £55 million. Milan appear to be the front runners in the market, but there still seems a good ways to go, as whilst they have been linked with Costa in the past, he hasn’t truly expressed any desire to go to Italy.
A return to his former club is the preferred destination of Costa, but the stumbling block here is that he would be prevented from appearing for Atletico until January, as the club are under an embargo which restricts them from registering a player during this transfer window. Atletico have made a £26 million offer for Costa, but that has fallen well short of the Blues valuation. However, we feel this remains the most likely destination for Costa, who is prepared to sit out half a season to secure his dream move back to the Vicente Calderon.
TIANJIN QUANJIAN – or another Chinese Side
Chelsea’s likely preferred option for Costa would be to send him to China, and one of the moneybags teams in their Super League division. Although a few clubs are currently under financial pressure, the ‘overspend’ culture still remains high in China, with clubs desperate to bring in famous names to help promote their League. Tianjin Quanjian had already made a huge bid for Costa last season, which was rejected – but Chelsea would expect to command a fee higher from China than any European team interested in Costa, and also know that he could not come back to potentially haunt them in any Champions League matchup. Costa would not want to go to China, but if all else fails, he may have no other option.
After selling Romelu Lukaku to Manchester United, Everton were widely expected to replace him with Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud, who himself was expected to leave after the arrival of Alexandre Lacazette. But Giroud now seems quite content to fight for his place at the Emirates, leaving with Everton with no direct replacement for Lukaku. Wayne Rooney has returned, but is preferred in a deeper role. So could Costa be the man Everton now turn to? It is a distinct possibility, although as yet they have not indicated anything in that direction. Funds are not an issue, and continued delays with the signing of Gylfi Sigurddson, means that Everton could shelf plans with him, especially if Ross Barkley stays, and make a play for Costa – whom Everton fans would love, being right out of the Duncan Ferguson mould.
Despite Chelsea boss Antonio Conte having confirmed that Costa is on his way out and having now signed Alvaro Morata, this is football, and we all know that anything can happen in the beautiful game – and often does. Chelsea may not get an acceptable offer and should Morata get injured, or Conte have a sudden change of heart, then Costa may just stay at the London club for a further season. Highly unlikely….but you just never know
It seems that the destination for Costa will end up being one of the above options. Despite a reputation that precedes him, Costa has always scored goals and been a threat to opposing defences. Exactly why there is such little interest in such an effective player, with cash being thrown at arguably lesser players all over Europe, is quite extraordinary. But that’s the beauty of the game…..isn’t it?