Diego Costa has released a statement in which he rules out making a return to Chelsea, insisting that he absolutely wants to sign for Atletico Madrid.
The controversial striker is currently in his native Brazil following his much-publicised fallout with his current employers, for whom he has played a key part in winning two Premier League titles in three years and scored 59 goals in 120 appearances since arriving from Atletico in 2014.
Costa was told by Antonio Conte during the summer, via text message, that he no longer had a future at Stamford Bridge. But they have this week demanded he return to training to put himself in contention for selection, but he has now made it clear that he will not play for the club again.
In the statement, the 28-year-old Spain international said: “My destination has already been decided. I must return to Atletico Madrid. It turns out that there is the impasse that Chelsea do not want to release me. But I believe that this situation will be resolved now on my return to Spain.”
Atletico are indeed keen to sign Costa, but a Fifa-imposed transfer ban forbids them from doing so until January. It is also understood that the two clubs are miles apart in their valuation of the player, with Los Rojiblancos willing to pay around £35million for a player the English side rate at £59million.