HomeEPL - TeamsChelseaIs Diego Costa Worth the Trouble?

Is Diego Costa Worth the Trouble?

Diego Costa grabbed the headlines, albeit for the wrong reasons, in Chelsea’s latest defeat against Everton in what was a feisty FA Cup quarter-finals clash on Saturday that saw Guus Hiddink‘s side crash out of two competitions in the space of four days. The Spanish forward has been hot and cold for Chelsea this season and not been able to replicate his fantastic record last year plagued by injuries but found form since the turn of 2016.

diego

A bad week for Chelsea got worse when Romelu Lukaku rose to the occasion to score a brace and send Chelsea packing brought a sense of ‘what could have been’ to the West London club who offloaded him to Everton for about £28 million in favor of the then Atletico Madrid forward Diego Costa. What could have been. But in Diego Costa, Chelsea possesses an all-round out-and-out center forward who has proved his mettle in the Premier League, especially last season when his goals won their first league title in five years. But his antics and perceived aggression on the field has always been targeted by football purists and rival fans often attempting to tarnish the image of Chelsea football club, which brings us to the question, is he worth the trouble?

The answer has to be a resounding yes. It’s natural that some players thrive on being the target. Some relish being kicked and savagely enjoy giving it back. Diego Costa is one of those who would be half the player without his combustive persona like a mask he puts on before crossing the white line. It’s hard to deny, even when he is not in the best of form, he comes across as the last man you would want to see the ball when he is in the box with half a yard of space to exploit.

Diego Costa - 2014/15 v 2015/16

Costa’s numbers are still very good, for a player that faced multiple injuries at key points during the season. In spite of all the unrest behind the scenes at Chelsea, managerial changes, poorer team performances, Costa has still scored 11 goals in 23 starts in the Premier League which is quite a commendable ratio of 1 in 2 games. To put this in perspective, he’s scored only 1 less than Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud who has appeared in 5 more games with the luxury of playing in front of the league’s most prolific chance creator, Mesut Ozil.

Not to forget, Diego Costa is still Chelsea’s most prolific goalscorer at the moment, even in this disaster of a season where Chelsea have spent more days in the bottom half of the table than the other end. That he’s scored as many goals as Willian, Pedro, Oscar and Hazard combined, in a season where he’s rarely been able to play to his full potential – speaks volumes.

At 27, the Spanish forward, is at his peak of his powers now. His involvement and success with the national team in the upcoming European Championships in France should play a vital role in his club future but with Chelsea preparing for a new era under Conte, a manager who likes his players to be ruthless and passionate with a battler going to war, its highly convenient he already has ‘that’ player he could build his new team around, in Diego Costa. One would hope the Italian takes him on board with him in his new journey.

Aashish Murali
Aashish Murali
I can bore you to tears.
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