Atletico Madrid may unveil Diego Costa before Chelsea tie

  • Atletico Madrid agree £55m deal plus £5m in add-ons to sign Diego Costa
  • Chelsea striker had been frozen out of first-team plans by boss Antonio Conte
  • Blues set to visit Atletico Madrid for Champions League clash on Wednesday

By Sami Mokbel And Adam Crafton For The Daily Mail

Published: 17:31 EDT, 21 September 2017 | Updated: 20:18 EDT, 21 September 2017

Chelsea will almost double their money on Diego Costa when the AWOL striker completes his return to Atletico Madrid in a deal worth close to £60million.

The Blues have agreed to sell the Spain international for almost £55m, with £5m in add-ons.

Costa, now 28, who signed for Chelsea from Atletico in 2014 for £32m, will have a medical in the next 48 hours before signing a four-year contract, with the move expected to be completed by the start of next week.

An agreement has been struck between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid for the transfer of Costa
An agreement has been struck between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid for the transfer of Costa

An agreement has been struck between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid for the transfer of Costa

Costa's final appearance for Chelsea came in the FA Cup final defeat by Arsenal in May
Costa's final appearance for Chelsea came in the FA Cup final defeat by Arsenal in May

Costa's final appearance for Chelsea came in the FA Cup final defeat by Arsenal in May

COSTA IN NUMBERS 

£32million - fee paid by Chelsea to Atletico in July 2014.

120 - appearances for the Blues, 109 from the start.

59 - goals for Chelsea.

52 - Premier League goals in 89 appearances.

20 - best goal return in a Premier League season (in 2014-15 and 2016-17).

2 - Champions League goals in 15 appearances for Chelsea.

31 - yellow cards.

1 - red card.

12 - games missed through suspension.

3 - Chelsea managers played under (Jose Mourinho, Guus Hiddink, Antonio Conte).

3 - major trophies won (Premier League 2014-15, 2016-17; League Cup 2014-15). 

Costa was seen preparing to fly out of Sao Paulo on Thursday evening and was asked if he was leaving Chelsea with any feelings of animosity toward Antonio Conte.

However, the striker told Sky Sports news: 'There's nothing of the sort there, I'm not upset with anybody, I have no bitterness towards anyone. 

'Everything is cool.'

He is likely to pocket a similar amount to his £150,000-a-week wage at Chelsea, after turning down more lucrative approaches from China.

Costa could be confirmed and unveiled as an Atletico player before Chelsea play at the Wanda Metropolitano — the Madrid club’s new home — in the Champions League on Wednesday.

He will, though, have to wait until January to appear for Atletico, since the club, currently third in La Liga, are under a FIFA transfer embargo.

Costa, who was in his Brazilian hometown of Lagarto on Wednesday evening, will fly to Madrid for a medical on Friday and will be unveiled at Atletico’s home game with Sevilla Saturday.

The player will initially be on loan from January, with Atletico making the transfer permanent next summer. The Spanish club will also pay all his wages.

Costa will train with the squad. He has worked with a personal trainer in Brazil but is some way short of match fitness.

The upcoming international break will likely be too soon for a Spain recall, after Costa missed the September internationals due to his lack of game-time.

Costa¿s summer began with a text from Antonio Conte, telling him his Chelsea career was over
Costa¿s summer began with a text from Antonio Conte, telling him his Chelsea career was over

Costa's summer began with a text from Antonio Conte, telling him his Chelsea career was over

It is expected that Atletico manager Diego Simeone will add Costa to his Champions League squad in January.

The news brings the curtain down on an acrimonious, long-running saga that has overshadowed Chelsea.

At the start of summer, Atletico were keen to pay around £45m for their former player but Chelsea successfully negotiated the fee upwards.

Blues boss Antonio Conte made it clear Costa had no future at Stamford Bridge, while the striker has made no secret of his desire to leave west London.

Costa will return to Atletico Madrid three years after leaving the club for Stamford Bridge
Costa will return to Atletico Madrid three years after leaving the club for Stamford Bridge

Costa will return to Atletico Madrid three years after leaving the club for Stamford Bridge

Chelsea’s asking price had proved a barrier — despite both player and manager wanting an agreement. But after months of negotiating, Costa’s wish has finally been granted.

Costa, who scored 20 league goals for Chelsea last season, has been on strike from the club after a furious text-message row with Conte during the summer.

The striker alleged that Conte informed him by text that his Chelsea career was over and, in an explosive interview with Sportsmail, also claimed that the manager blocked his contract renewal negotiations in January.

Costa spoke exclusively to Sportsmail's Adam Crafton about his future in football in August
Costa spoke exclusively to Sportsmail's Adam Crafton about his future in football in August

Costa spoke exclusively to Sportsmail's Adam Crafton about his future in football in August

He added that he would be prepared to go a year without being paid by the club if they refused to sanction his move to Madrid.

Chelsea subsequently fined him for his absences and it is estimated that the club may have saved up to £750,000 while Costa has stayed away.

In all, Costa scored 58 goals in 120 appearances for Chelsea and won two Premier League titles and a League Cup.

In his place, £58m summer signing Alvaro Morata has filled the vacuum and made a positive start to life at Stamford Bridge.

 

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