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4th Jan, 2017 | 4:17pm

Mauricio Pochettino: I would love to have this Chelsea star in my Tottenham team

By Matt Farr

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has admitted he would love to have Chelsea goalscorer Diego Costa at White Hart Lane.

Pochettino’s side host Premier League leaders Chelsea on Wednesday night, and the former Southampton boss was full of praise for one of the Blues’ star performers.

Costa has contributed 14 goals and five assists from 20 appearances in all competitions this season, and will look to increase his tally against Spurs at White Hart Lane.

Pochettino admitted to AS that he would love to have the Spain international at Tottenham, a player he describes as ‘having the ability to improve every day.’

He said: “Diego Costa is a player who you hate when you face him but you love when he is your team-mate.

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“He is super-competitive, with character and never likes to lose. He is proud and that is what makes him to have the ability to improve every day.

“He transmits to his team-mates the culture of winning, of not being satisfied, of always looking for more.

“He makes the rest better every day and he is someone anyone would want to have in his team.”

Costa endured a turbulent start to his career at Stamford Bridge, with concerns over his attitude and behaviour overshadowing a clear goalscoring talent.

In a meeting with Arsenal last season, Costa made the headlines for his role in a controversial incident involving Gabriel Paulista. Despite overstepping the mark, the 28-year-old’s antics went unpunished by referee Mike Dean; although he was later handed a retrospective three-match ban by the FA.

Following the game, the Sun named the Chelsea striker as the Premier League’s dirtiest player, based on a reader poll. However, Costa appears a much different figure this season, and continues to draw the headlines for the right reasons.

Victory for Chelsea will see them extend their winning run to 14 league games, and take their lead over second-placed Liverpool to eight points.

Spurs, meanwhile, will not only halt Chelsea’s remarkable record with a win or draw, but can move above rivals Arsenal into the top-four with the full three points.

In other Tottenham news, former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has delivered a fascinating mid-season appraisal of Spurs.