Diego Costa Updates
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Chelsea and PSG would be meeting each other for the second leg of the last 16 tie in the Champions league and it seems a huge meeting with respect to a swap deal involving their star strikers would be discussed thereafter.

Chelsea plot stunning striker swap deal for South American goal machine.
The two clubs have been pitted against each other in the competition for the last three seasons and it seems this time, apart from a battle on the field, there would be vital discussion off the field too.

It seems both the clubs would be looking to have an exchange deal involving Diego Costa and Edinson Cavani. Cavani is very much liked by Antonio Conte, who is reported to be announced as the next Chelsea manager in this month.

On the other hand, although Costa has been in superb form following the arrival of Interim manager Guus Hiddink, it seems the Spanish International is not happy with his stay in London. The former Atletico Madrid striker is seen as a replacement for PSG's star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

The Sweden International will most likely leave the club in the summer and the French giants consider the current Chelsea striker Costa as the perfect replacement. There have been reports that talks would start this week regarding this striker deal.

It seems that Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone is very much interested in bringing his former star striker Diego Costa back to the club.

Atlético are offering Jackson Martínez to Chelsea in a desperate bid to land Diego Costa before Monday's deadline. 
There are reports stating that Atletico have offered Chelsea a swap deal wherein Jackson Martinez would be offered to the Blues in exchange for Costa.

After enjoying a spectacular season in the last campaign, Costa had been a shadow of himself under Mourinho this season. However, the removal of Mourinho and the arrival of Hiddink has brought Costa back to his best. The movement of the striker has improved since the Dutchman's arrival.

It seems fair to say that Chelsea would not have minded a swap deal like this around two months back when Costa was clearly struggling. But with the striker back to his best, it seems unlikely that Chelsea would be interested in such an offer.

Martinez, on the other hand, has not really been able to set the Vicente de Calderon on fire since his arrival. The recent defeat to Barcelona may have hindered the chances of the Madrid side in their current title chase.

However, Simeone would have preferred the arrival of his former star player in the current transfer window in order to provide a shot in the arm for Atletico's title challenge.

Diego Costa was a huge signing from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2014 and was one of the key reasons behind Chelsea's title march last season. This season however has been a huge let down. It can be said that Costa's form is vital to the team. In the first half of last campaign, he enjoyed a blistering season and so did Chelsea.

Chelsea's Diego Costa threw his warm-up bib after being benched vs Tottenham 
However, the dip in Costa's form towards the end of last season was reflected in the way Chelsea labored towards the title. This season however has been a different story altogether. Chelsea have massively underperformed and Costa getting most of the blame is not fully right. However, with backups like Falcao and Remy, the onus to carry the burden of that lone striker was clearly on Costa. The hamstring issue has not really hampered his season like the last campaign but he has clearly struggled to keep up his good form of last season.

The return of 4 goals is certainly not good enough for a player who has been signed by the club for more than 30 million pounds. Hence, it was a not a great surprise that Costa was actually dropped from the starting eleven by Mourinho for the match against Tottenham. However, he was dropped after a disagreement with Mourinho and in a match of great magnitude. This gives rise to suspicions that all is not well between the manager and the player.

Most of the top performers like Hazard, Fabregas, Terry and Matic were dropped by Mourinho at some stage in this season. Hence, it could have been regarded as a normal disagreement between the manager and player. However, given the nature of Costa coupled with his reaction at not being introduced as a substitute in the Tottenham game, the situation might just get out of hand.

Mourinho is known to have issues with players and his time at Real Madrid just delineates that fact. In fact, Mourinho has been prone to cut his nose to spite his face at times in his managerial career. However, it is very important for a manager to stand his ground and not give into the tantrums of his players. He is probably right about the Costa situation given the striker's dismal form.

There are rumors stating Chelsea are looking for another striker in January. Names like Muller and Berahino have been discussed. The Muller one is far fetched but Berahino may be a possibility. However, the question is about the possibility of Chelsea actually finding an upgrade on Costa. There is also a good possibility of a patch up between the player and manager and Costa finally finding some of his goal scoring abilities.

Diego Costa has opened up in a recent interview and has said that nobody likes Chelsea in England and that he is slowly realizing that fact.

Diego Costa
Costa recently returned to action against Aston Villa and marked it with a goal after missing three games through suspension. The FA gave the Brazilian striker a three match ban after he was found guilty in an incident involving Gabriel in the game against Arsenal.

But Costa remains adamant that he will not change his style of play unless his manager asks him to. He said that he was not a cry baby and that he has been kicked by players often during games. He said that he doesn't care for the opinions of anyone other than Mourinho or the Chelsea supporters.

Regarding the three match ban, Costa said that he still feels has done nothing wrong in that incident. He said that the club and the manager has seen the FA's decision as wrong and has given him support during the ban. Costa said that it was a difficult time for him to watch his team suffer from the stands.

The 27 year old said that it was always difficult to miss games and it was especially tough when it was not through injury.Chelsea are currently 12th in the table with just three wins so far. Costa scored in Chelsea's win against Aston Villa last week and the striker believes that they can turn this poor form around.

Costa believes the season is still young and that the club can come out of the struggles if everyone works hard. He said that Chelsea are alone in this battle because no one else likes the club. He said that the fans love the club 100 percent but it seems that nobody else likes the club so they cannot expect any help or sympathy from anyone else.

The Football Association of England has announced their verdict on the incident involving Diego Costa and Gabriel Paulista from Saturday's match between Chelsea and Arsenal. Gabriel was sent off in the match but Arsenal had appealed against the red card. Also there were some incidents in the game involving Costa which referee Mike Dean did not appear to see.

Diego Costa and Gabriel Paulista
FA has on Tuesday confirmed that Arsenal's appeal for rescinding Gabriel's sending off has been successful. Arsenal reportedly used video footage from ESPN - Brazil to show that Gabriel had minimal contact on Costa for a foul which eventually got him sent off.

Gabriel's red card was overturned and the three match ban will be lifted with immediate effect. This means that Gabriel will be available for selection against Tottenham Hotspur for the midweek league cup clash. The Brazilian though, still faces charges for improper conduct for not leaving the field immediately after the red card.

Arsenal fans were furious after Mike Dean's decisions in the game and they even started an online petition asking for Mike Dean not to ever referee an Arsenal game again.

Meanwhile it was agony for Chelsea as Diego Costa was banned for his next three matches with immediate effect. Costa's antics in the game were reviewed by a three man independent committee of FA. The incidents were not spotted by the officials on field so a video footage was sent to the elite referee panel who decided that it should have been a red card for the Brazilian born striker.

Mourinho had praised Costa after the game saying that the striker was his man of the match and that he played the game exactly the way it should have been played. Chelsea released a statement on their website saying that they were extremely disappointed with FA's decision to ban Costa .

Costa will now miss the matches against Walsall in the league cup, and against Newcastle and Southampton in the league.

Kurt Zouma took to twitter to apologize for his comments on Costa, branding the striker as a 'cheat'.

Kurt Zouma and Diego Costa
Zouma was speaking to beIN sport after Chelsea's game against Arsenal, which they won 2-0. The main talking point of the game was the controversial incident in the first half where Diego Costa wound up Gabriel which led to the defender eventually getting sent off.

That incident gave Chelsea the advantage over Arsenal and it was Zouma himself who opened the scoring for Chelsea, heading home from a Fabregas free kick. Arsenal received a second red in the second half and Chelsea duly scored another one in the dying minutes. Mourinho's Chelsea was in poor form in the run up to the game and this was a morale boosting win for the team.

Post match, many pundits have criticized Diego Costa for his abusive behavior for his part in getting Gabriel sending off. Costa has been involved in such incidents before as well and is earning a reputation for being the villain guy in English football.

Kurt Zouma was talking in his post match interview when he called the Brazilian striker a cheat. When asked about the controversial incident, the Frenchman had this to say, " We're not surprised because we know Diego."

The Chelsea defender's comments came as a shock when he called his own teammate a cheat. But he took to twitter to apologize soon after. The defender tweeted,


"Everyone knows Diego and this guy likes to cheat and put his opponent out of the game. That happened in the game but he is a really nice guy. We're proud to have him, like other players, and we are happy to win this game."

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was quick to jump into the striker's defence though, and said that Costa played the game exactly in the way he had to play. Mourinho also labelled Arsenal's play as rash, comparing their football to rugby soccer, pointing at Gabriel in particular.

Chelsea beat Arsenal 2-0 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. Goals from Kurt Zouma and Eden Hazard helped the defending Champions get back to winning ways. We look at five takeaways from the match.

Diego Costa and Gabriel Paulista
Referee's decisions

After a quiet first half, Costa burst the game into life. The striker elbowed and slapped Koscielny in the face before barging down on him with his chest. He then got in an argument with Gabriel and both the players were booked. Gabriel then accidentally stepped on Costa's foot and Mike Dean was influenced by the Chelsea players to send Gabriel off. The referee's decisions were biased for most part of the game as he showed another red card to Arsenal when he sent off Santi Cazorla after just his second foul of the game. Mike Dean has a history with Arsenal and he suffered the wrath of many Arsenal fans after his decisions today.

Fabregas back to his best?

Fabregas has been blamed for much of Chelsea's poor form ahead of this game. The European tie against M Tel Aviv was a morale booster for the whole Chelsea team and Cesc in particular as he set up a goal and scored one himself in that game. That confidence continued into today's match and he was a constant threat with his passing, and deservedly got the assist for Zouma's opener

Mourinho gets the better of Wenger

Wenger has beaten his Chelsea counter part only once in fifteen attempts including Saturday's game. He is yet to beat Mourinho in the league and maybe that mental block was there for Wenger's team as they failed to capitalise on a Chelsea side that were on a poor run. Arsenal has performed reasonably well against most other top sides in the past two years but they have always found games against Chelsea difficult.

Zouma to give Terry worries

The Chelsea skipper was dropped to the bench after some poor early season display and the man to replace him was Kurt Zouma. Zouma was absolutely outstanding in the game against Arsenal and opened the scoring with a brilliant header. The defender was solid at the back and the highlight was the sliding tackle when he stopped Theo Walcott from getting through on goal. With Zouma in this form, it will be much tougher for Terry to get back into the team.

Arsenal are not Champion material

Arsenal have a lot to complain about in the aftermath of this defeat but they can't just keep on blaming their luck and refereeing decisions over and over. Even before Gabriel was sent off controversially in the first half, Arsenal weren't at their dominating best. They were solid defensively, but going forward they lacked the slick and fast passing which is a trademark of Arsenal teams. They also lacked a leader character who could have saved Gabriel from seeing red during that incident. Such incidents are bound to happen over the season and Arsenal can't just blame their luck whenever they lose.

Here are 10 stats from this week's UCL games:

*Eden Hazard missed a chance to open the scoring from the spot for Chelsea against Maccabi Tel Aviv. This made him only the fourth player to have missed three or more penalties in the Champions league since 2006/07. The other three players to have done so are Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Ruud Van Nistelrooy.

Lionel Messi
*After appearing for Barcelona against Roma, Lionel Messi became the youngest player in UCL history to have played in 100 games.

*Despite losing against Dinamo Zagreb, Arsenal have won 76 times in the Champions league -  the most by a team that has not won the competition.

*Dinamo Zagreb's win was also their first win in the competition since September 1999.

*Since his debut in 2004, only Xavi (24)  and Cristiano Ronaldo (23) have registered more assists than Cesc Fabregas (22).

*Roma's defence was excellent against Barcelona. This game was the one in which Barcelona had least shots on target (3) this season.

*Diego Costa scored his first Champions League goal for Chelsea. It was his first goal in the competition since last scoring for Atletico Madrid against Chelsea.

*Theo Walcott became the sixth Arsenal player to have scored 10 or more goals for the club.

*Arsenal's defence was shaky today and this game meant that the Gunners have just kept one clean sheet in their last 11 Champions league away group games.

*Messi's stats in the UCL after his 100 games - 77 goals, 22 assists , 4 trophy wins.

Diego Costa- Did he choose the wrong country? [Image by: Carlos Delgado]
What do you think of when you see the name 'Diego Costa' on a teamsheet? Chelsea fans, and formerly Atletico Madrid fans, would rejoice at this occasion. The opposition's fans - not so much. That is because Costa is one hell of a striker, as he is already proving in the Premier League. Before the world cup, there was lots of controversy surrounding the Chelsea talisman, and that was due to the fact that he chose to play for the Spanish national side rather than the Brazilian side. Many expected him to light up the campaign for the former holders Spain, as the only missing piece in their jigsaw masterpiece was a lethal striker. However, that was definitely not the case. Costa chose to play for the wrong team, for reasons unknown.

There have been numerous theories as to why Costa opted for Spain rather than Brazil. Some believe that he was loyal to the country where his footballing career 'started', whereas others just think that he wanted the fame associated with the former World Cup and the current Euro cup holders. Whatever the reason might be, though, one thing is for certain: as the way things look right now, Costa definitely made the wrong decision.

Brazil are a team known for the extravagant, free-flowing football. To some extent, we saw this under Scolari at the world cup, and might see this under Dunga as well. Although the team is managed by someone who I would not class as on par with the likes of Loew or del Bosque, Brazil is a team made up of remarkable individual talent, similar to Spain, but contrasting styles of play.

Costa would have been much more suited to the way the Brazilians play, than he seems with the Spanish style of possession-based football.

Costa is a striker who excels in a team which plays direct, counter-attacking football. That is why he was so good at Atletico, and this is why he is impressing so much at Chelsea. In the Spanish system, where everything must be built up beautifully after stringing up a hundred passes in between, Costa seems uncomfortable.

Brazil's flaw in the World Cup was the absence of a lethal striker, something which they have always had in the past with the likes of Ronaldo, Pele and Robinho. If Costa opted for Brazil rather than Spain, who knows, maybe their fortunes would have turned. Also, I am sure that Costa would not be missing the quality of players around him, and he probably would have enjoyed working alongside Neymar.


After pre-season, transfers and the first couple of games, I feel this is Chelsea's year. They did their business early which has given the team slightly longer to gel. They have made some clever acquisitions. At first I wasn't to sure about Diego Costa, having seen him in pre-season and after the first couple of premier league games he looks the real deal and fits in with Chelsea's style, he looks like a hard worker which is something Chelsea have lacked over the last couple of seasons. Felipe Luis also has a proven track record and is a good replacement for Ashley Cole. 

Chelsea have had a solid start so far although they have played the so called easier teams, an emphatic victory against voodoo team Everton has shown just how clinical Chelsea have become with Hazard, Costa, Oscar and Fabregas in your lineup goals are not going to be hard to come by. Defensively Chelsea have in my opinion have the best defence in the league.

 Terry and Cahill last year formed the best centre-back pairing in the league and with Ivanovic and Azpilicueta, the blues have two solid reliable full backs. Along with this defence Chelsea have managed to secure the best young goalkeeper in world football. Courtouis has excelled for Atletico Madrid over the last couple of seasons and is now ready to hold down his place as Chelsea's number one. He is big a big imposing figure and is technically very good. With these players and Mourinho at the helm Chelsea have a great chance and have already made in imposing start to the campaign. 

Chelseas best XI

Courtouis
Ivanovic
Cahill
Terry
Matic
Ramires
Hazard
Fabregas
Schurle
Costa
Willian

Article contributed by: Footyshekkeer

Twitter: @Footyshekkeer

During this transfer window Chelsea have brought in some good quality players and this blog is where I will make a judgement on whether or not I believe that they are good enough to succeed at the club.

    Diego Costa:

Diego Costa
The man who knocked Chelsea out of the Champions League last season. He has proved that he can score at a top level, he has also proved that he can use his strength to his advantage. To me Costa is a Drogba like player, a player that is great in the air and can use his strength to hold up the play and create a chance. He proved on Monday that he has the ability to score in the league. He to me is the complete striker, someone who can hold up play, cross the ball, find space and most importantly score.

    Cesc Fabregas:

Cesc Fabregas
The ex Arsenal and Barca midfielder proved throughout pre season and Monday night that he was a very worthy investment. The midfield genius seemed to control every move that Chelsea made. He was an easy choice for the Man of the Match award and this was supported by the assist he was given by André Schürrle’s superb goal. Fabregas has been able to take on all the responsibility left behind after Frank Lampard departed. He has come in and has taken complete control of the midfield and shown that he is the man to lead every attack.

    Felipe Luis:

Felipe Luis
The left back has arrived on the back of some very good performances for Atletico. There is of course a debate on whether he is needed or whether Azpilicueta is good enough to play every game at left back. either way Luis has arrived and looks ready to fight for the left back position with all his heart. He is able to get up and down the wing with no difficultly and appears to be as solid as Cole was in his prime. Luis has already shown in pre season that he is already comfortable with the way that Chelsea play and has good link up down that left side. He has yet to play in the league but I am certain that it should not be long till we see him in the league.

    Dider Drogba:

Dider Drogba
The legend has returned. The man who won Chelsea the Champions League in 2012 has returned to the club and brought back so many memories for the fans. Granted he has lost pace but he seems to still have the strength and determination that has also been with him throughout his Chelsea career. This no doubt will drive him on through the  season and I can see him hitting at lest 10 goals and playing either up front with Costa or coming in to replace him. I do not believe that Jose will just use in every 5 games or so.

Article contributed by:  Matt Clark

Twitter: @mattclarky1996

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