Diego Costa ‘asks to leave Atletico Madrid in January as club snub option of contract extension’ – making ex-Chelsea striker unlikely to face his former club in the Champions League
Former Chelsea striker Diego Costa has asked to leave LaLiga leaders Atletico Madrid in the January transfer window, according to reports.
The 32-year-old has made just three brief substitute appearances for Atletico in more than two months after club record signing Joao Felix and new arrival Luis Suarez established themselves ahead of him in boss Diego Simeone’s plans.
Costa has been hampered by injuries and scored only once since the first day of the season, missing six league matches and Atletico’s entire Champions League game so far through injuries.
Diego Costa seems certain to leave LaLiga side Atletico Madrid in the January transfer window
The striker scored against Elche earlier this month but has fallen out of favour and been injured
Transfer expert Tancredi Palmeri has claimed that Costa has requested to leave in January, six months ahead of the scheduled expiry of his current contract.
Atletico were already said to have decided not to extend Costa’s current deal, which would ensure he would leave on a free should he stay until the summer.
Palmeri appeared to suggest that club bosses are ready to ‘dissolve’ Costa’s contract next month, with the likes of Tottenham and PSG potentially ready to revisit their interest in the experienced hitman.
Fiery forward Costa has spent eight years at Atletico across three spells, returning in 2018 after winning the Premier League twice with Chelsea between 2014 and 2017.
Costa turned out 120 times for Chelsea in a prolific three-year period between 2014 and 2017
His departure would end any prospect of a meeting with the Blues in their Champions League round of 16 clash with Atletico next year.
Costa scored 59 goals in 82 appearances during a prolific spell at Stamford Bridge and reacted excitedly on social media when the draw for the Champions League was made.
Despite falling out of favour recently, Costa has made a total of 215 appearances for the club, scoring 83 times and providing 36 assists.
He scored in the same game as Suarez for the first time with a goal against Elche earlier this month, but was introduced for only three minutes of the 2-0 win at Real Sociedad on Tuesday.