EXCLUSIVE | By Editor
Diego Costa is ready to quit Chelsea at the end of the season and return to Spain, Football Insider sources understand.
The Spain international has told friends that he is struggling to adapt to life in England 14 months after his £35million transfer from Atletico Madrid.
Sources have told Football Insider that Costa could be ready to push for a transfer from Stamford Bridge if there is interest in him from one of the leading Spanish clubs.
The 26-year-old shares the same agent in Jorge Mendes as Jose Mourinho but is understood to have a strained relationship with his manager, partly as a result of his hamstring troubles in the second half of last season.
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Despite his on-field success, Costa struggled to settle in London during his debut season and misses life in Spain, where he moved to from Brazil, via a season in Portugal, as a 19-year-old.
Costa is widely regarded as one of the outstanding centre-forwards in the Premier League.
He made a sensational start to his Chelsea career and was a key figure in team’s title success last season, contributing an impressive 20 goals in 26 league matches.
The Brazilian-born forward came off the bench to score his first Champions League goal for the Londoners in Wednesday’s win over Maccabi Tel Aviv, his second strike of the season. In total, he has scored 22 goals in 43 Chelsea matches.
Quizzed afterwards about returning to Atletico at some point, Costa refused to rule out the possibility.
“How am I supposed to go back to Atleti if no one’s made me an offer,” he said, according to Spanish publication AS.
Costa also admitted he wants more from the team despite beating Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Champions League last night.
“We know that we can give a little more than we’ve been giving; each and every one of us knows that we can do more. But we think that things are going to start to improve for us,” he added.
The Costa Chelsea situation could prove another headache for Mourinho following the team’s disastrous start to the season.