Atletico Madrid don’t need Diego Costa – Diego Simeone

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Atletico Madrid manager, Diego Simeone, has said he does not need Chelsea striker, Diego Costa, in his team.

The Argentine believes the form of forward Kevin Gameiro has softened the blow of failing to sign Costa in the pre-season.

Simeone noted that his side “did everything” they could to sign the Chelsea attacker, but says things have worked out fine even without him.

Atletico were desperate to bring Costa in ahead of the 2016-17 campaign, but the striker remained with Chelsea and has helped the Blues climb to the top of the Premier League.

Simeone did manage to sign Gameiro from Sevilla and the France international has repaid him with 14 goals in all competitions – a tally the Atletico boss expects to rise.

He told AS, “For me it is what I imagined from him, he has 14 goals and I expect even more.

“I think he has been better in games than just his goals because he has 15 assists. He gives us speed, keeps the ball, has good interplay and works well with Antoine Griezmann.

“It gives us a chance to attack with Gameiro-Griezmann and teams know they cannot leave space.”

When asked if signing Costa would have improved the fortunes of Atletico, who sit fourth in La Liga and will face Leicester City in the Champions League quarter-finals, Simeone said, “It could have been something better, or worse.

“He’s doing great at Chelsea and he’s probably a key to what’s happening to the team.

“Atletico tried everything to sign Costa, but in England there is no cancellation clause. Diego did his best to come.

“We were always transparent with Gameiro in relation to Costa. He knows he was the first choice if Costa did not arrive.”


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