The summer transfer window that expected Premier League champions, Chelsea, to let go of one of their stars, Diego Costa, before the transfer window ended saw a rather dramatic shutdown, after the Spanish striker did not complete his much anticipated switch to former club, Atletico Madrid.
The remarkable saga began when Costa was told via a text message by manager Antonio Conte that he was not in his plans for the 2017/18 season after being an integral part of Blues’ Premier League-winning squad last season. Since then, an irretrievable breakdown between him and Conte led to nothing less than a war between the two parties.
And currently, as reported by Colin Mafham from Sunday Express, this war may be set to become uglier, as Chelsea and Costa could be heading for a multi-million pound battle in court. It was reported that the Blues are considering suing ‘the rebel striker for up to £50 million if he continues to refuse to return to the club.’
The Spaniard has two years left on his current contract at Stamford Bridge, under which he is getting a weekly wage of £185,000, making him the club’s second highest earner, and the Blues believe that Costa is breaching this contract. It was claimed that the forward is also said to be consulting his lawyers regarding the case.
The club wants the striker to return to training and fulfill his contractual obligations after they named him in their 25-man Premier League squad, but excluded the Spaniard from their Champions League squad. On the other hand, Costa claims that his ‘contractual obligation’ ended when Conte texted him that he was no longer needed.
As it appears, the High Court may be the final judge to this battle if neither side backs down. Chelsea have already faced this situation in the past with club doctor Eva Carneiro, after she had a spat with former boss Jose Mourinho, which eventually led to the Blues paying £5m to Eva. However, owner Roman Abramovich has indicated that the club won’t do that this time around if anything like that happens.
The only way possible for both the sides to get out of this without spending any money and legal action would appear to be with Costa returning to England from Rio de Janeiro, where he has been living for the last two months, and resuming training.
Written by Sidharth Jindal
Sports fanatic with a passion for writing (predominantly football) and “Wants to live life to its fullest.” Writes about the Premier League on his personal blog.