After the heartbreaking news of being dumped by text Diego Costa is on the hunt for a new lover, a club that will treat him with the affection he deserves. With Antonio Conte telling him he is no longer needed at Stamford Bridge, the question now is where next for the Spanish international.
With a return to Atletico Madrid blocked off due to their transfer ban (they could still sign him but Costa would not be able to play until January) and the regulations in China regarded foreign players being tightened the number of options the forward has are diminishing.
If you were to look at Europe’s truly elite clubs then you do have to wonder just where exactly he would fit in. A move to Atletico’s cross town rivals Real is highly unlikely as is one to Barcelona. Maybe Bayern Munich could be considered but do they really need him what with the talent that Carlo Ancelotti has at his disposal.
That means that as and when Costa does depart from West London he is going to have to cast his net a bit wider in regards to his new employers. It was believed that the net would be cast as far as Italy with A.C. Milan set to prepare a bid of £40m for the Brazilian born striker.
Milan have the funds available after former owner Silvio Berlusconi sold the club to Rossoneri Sport Investment Lux a consortium of Chinese business men. But the stumbling block is the fact that Costa is demanding a weekly wage of £200,000 a week.
Those demands would break Milan’s pay structure and it is felt that the outlay in regards to transfer fee and wages would be too much even for the clubs new owners. Another option would be a loan deal but the preference from the San Siro outfit would be a permanent move albeit with a cheaper weekly wage.
Therefore with Costa effectively pricing himself out of a move to Serie A it again brings up the pertinent question of where exactly he will end up and more importantly who can afford him. When you look at the options available then a move to China looks like the only viable one.
Costa has stated that he wants to play as much as possible next season what with there being the FIFA World Cup in 12 months time, but in the back of his mind there is the risk of ruling himself out of international selection should he move to the Far East.
That’s not to say that moving to the Chinese Super League is an automatic black mark but firstly there is the drop off in quality in comparison to Europe’s major competitions while also the fact the two seasons run at different times, meaning large periods of activity.
The 28 year old seems as if he is stuck between a rock and a hard place right now, he cannot afford to sit on the bench at Chelsea but he can afford to drop his wage demands if it meant playing regular first team football. Costa now will have to decide whether to stick or twist as he weighs up the next phase of his career.