Paul Scholes claims Diego Costa is “old enough” to decide his future, as the Manchester United legend didn’t agree with the suggestions that Chelsea teammates should try to convince the player to stay.
Costa was dropped from Antonio Conte’s team to face Leicester on Saturday, amid reports of a bust-up between the star striker and the Blues manager, as well as the speculation linking the Spanish international with a mega-money move to China looming large.
Scholes apparently has plenty of experience with star teammates pondering over the exit, with Cristiano Ronaldo pushing for and eventually succeeding in an £80 million move to Real Madrid, and Wayne Rooney twice demanding an exit before deciding not to leave.
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Asked if he tried to persuade the likes of Rooney and Ronaldo when they were having an issue with the Old Trafford hierarchy, Scholes told BT Sport: “No, not one bit. Why? They’re old enough to make their own minds up. If they don’t want to play for the football club anymore, so what?
“My job on a Saturday afternoon – and a Tuesday/Wednesday night – was to go out and try to win the game with my teammates. Whoever I’m playing with – doesn’t matter who it is. I don’t care as long as we win the game.”
However, there may actually be nothing to the Conte-Costa rift rumours, after Conte publicly denied that there had been a bust-up and instead, insisting that he was dropped because of a back problem.
Conte said: “I think for the game I told the truth. I like, to tell the truth, and that is Diego stopped training on Tuesday. He didn’t train in the week because he wasn’t fit.
“The truth is what I told you before, and we will see in the next week (about his fitness ahead of Hull).”