Diego Costa now has a Champions League final to prepare for following Atletico Madrid's 3-1 hammering of Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday evening, but he is leaving the door open for a potential summer exit.
The Brazilian-born Spanish international scored from the penalty spot as Los Rojiblancos overcame the disappointment of their 0-0 draw in the first leg of the semi-final.
Heavily linked to Chelsea, Costa then spoke of a potential transfer in his post-match comments, per Goal Italia's Fabrizio Romano:
Costa's links with Chelsea are well known. The way in which he has softened the blow of Radamel Falcao's Atletico exit has made him one of the world's most respected finishers, and even Diego Simeone admits that this season could be his last in Madrid.
Simeone is well aware of the interest his star's performances have drawn, recently admitting to Spanish radio programme Al Primer Toque, via ESPN, that a departure isn't out of the question:
[Chelsea] are very powerful. They have [Samuel] Eto'o, a great player, but they will think about alternatives and Costa could be one of them.
He knows that on one side he could earn more money, but here he is going to compete. It would surprise me if the best teams in the world did not also come looking for Miranda, [Diego] Godin ...
If Costa decides to go, it will be OK with me. Our philosophy is to make players better—for us, that is something fundamental. When Falcao left for Monaco, you could not say no to him. He gave us life.
If Simeone's philosophy is to make players at the Vicente Calderon better, he's certainly succeeding. The former Estudiantes and Catania manager has pushed Atleti to the brink of an extraordinary double, squeezing the most out of his squad and turning Costa into the star of his show.
Jose Mourinho did his best to defend the Blues for their second-leg display, and when quizzed by Sky Sports' Geoff Shreeves regarding possible additions to his squad, he noted "next season will be better than this season":
Squawka shows just how successful Costa's night in West London was as Atletico booked their place opposite Real Madrid in what will be the first Champions League final to feature two clubs from the same city:
Costa's finish from the spot against Chelsea brings his tally to 36 goals in 48 appearances this season, per Transfermarkt, more than the 32 mustered by Mourinho's current strike trio of Fernando Torres, Samuel Eto'o and Demba Ba combined.
If, as Costa states, there are multiple parties interested in his services, Chelsea may have a fight on their hands in luring the scoring sensation to Stamford Bridge, but they possess all the means to get their man.
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