Why Diego Costa Will Win Chelsea the Premier League

Jason Pettigrove@@jaypetti1971Contributor IMay 2, 2014

Diego Costa will give Premier League defenders nightmares.
Diego Costa will give Premier League defenders nightmares.Matt Dunham/Associated Press

Atletico Madrid's Diego Costa could be about to swap the Spanish capital for the English one and ply his trade at Chelsea.

According to a report by Wayne Veysey of Goal.com, the La Liga marksman has agreed to a £35 million transfer to the Blues, in a move that will see his wages triple to around £150,000 per week.

For a goalscorer of his talent, that represents a bargain. Costa is tied with Lionel Messi on 27 goals in the race for the European Golden Shoe, per Euro Top Foot, and is just three behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez.

Diego Costa has only scored five goals less than Chelsea's main four strikers combined.
Diego Costa has only scored five goals less than Chelsea's main four strikers combined.Kirsty Wigglesworth/Associated Press

All three would cost significantly more than £35 million. Indeed, conservative estimates have put Suarez's value in the region of £70 million, per Chris Richards of the Daily Mirror, and you would suggest that he would be far cheaper on the open market than Messrs. Ronaldo and Messi.

Very similar in style to Didier Drogba, Costa is an “old-fashioned” centre-forward, and he's certainly one whose skill set is ideally suited to the roughhouse tactics of the Premier League.

As he showed during the Champions League tie at Stamford Bridge, Costa is no pushover, and brute strength and physicality form a large part of his game.

The naturalised Spaniard often plays the game right on the very edge and as such, is never too far away from a yellow card. However, Diego Costa is no bully boy. There is more to his game than that. Much more.

For a start, aside from his goals, which are scored from all areas and by all means (see below), he has also created 43 chances from open play, per Squawka.

His passing accuracy of 76 percent is more than adequate for a striker, given that their primary role is to stick the ball in the onion bag. A 58 percent shot accuracy is on a par with the best in the business. Suarez’s is 53 percent by way of example, per Squawka.

Costa can work equally well with his back to goal and feeding the wide players, as he can being played though, as the video from last seasons Copa Del Rey final demonstrates.

Aerially dominant, there is barely a weakness to his all-round game, save for a propensity to involve himself in mischief—something that Jose Mourinho won’t necessarily want to take away.

Pete Jenson of the Daily Mail noted:

Costa is not just a goalscorer. It is his ability to lead the line and bully defences that encouraged Del Bosque to bring him into the Spain fold. ... 

Atletico like to defend deep, suck teams in and hit them on the break. And Costa’s pace and finishing thrive in such conditions. ... 

He has the control and the intelligence to play with his back to goal and he is comfortable starting centrally and peeling off wide. ... 

Next season he could be doing just that for the likes of Hazard, Oscar and Wilian. He looks set to lead the line for Spain this summer at the expense of Fernando Torres. And it will be Torres’ place he takes at Stamford Bridge if Mourinho gets his way.

When you consider that Costa has only five goals less than all four of Chelsea’s strikers this season combined, per WhoScored, it gives you some idea of the excellence that this monster of a centre-forward will bring to Chelsea’s attacking play.

It’s completely fair to suggest that his arrival will galvanize a squad in mourning and provide the impetus to go one better than this season and secure some much-needed silverware.

Since Drobga left, Chelsea fans have been searching for a new hero. They won't have to wait long to acclaim another down the Kings Road.


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