Diego Costa has told close friends he's leaving Atletico Madrid for a Milan club
Diego Costa's second spell at Atletico Madrid has been awful
It doesn't get talked about often enough, but Diego Costa's return to Atlético Madrid has been one of the worst transfers in recent years in terms of value for money. After three years at Chelsea, winning two Premier League titles, Costa fell out with Antonio Conte, went AWOL and eventually forced a move back to Atlético, where he had blossomed into a devastating striker under Diego Simeone. But since his return, he has scored just 10 league goals in three seasons. 17 in all competitions. He cost them £60 million.
His dire performance against RB Leipzig in the Champions League last week laid bare how far Costa has fallen from the all-conquering centre-forward who fired Atléti to a LaLiga title in 2014.
His underwhelming second spell at Atletico is now coming to an end though. Juan Gato, journalist at Spanish radio station Cadena COPE, reported that Costa has informed his close friends that he will be leaving in this window, with his next challenge coming in the city of Milan, though it's not yet clear which San Siro side he will be playing for.
@diegocosta confesó a sus íntimos tras la eliminación en Champions que su próximo destino está en Milán. El delantero, con contrato hasta 2021, abandonará el @Atleti tras su segunda etapa rojiblanca pic.twitter.com/Byc9aEe3xS
— Juan Gato (@JGATOO1) August 16, 2020
His contract at Atlético runs until next summer, so whichever San Siro club signs him will end up paying a relatively small fee for the 31-year-old.
AC Milan are understood to be looking for a back-up striker to Zlatan Ibrahimović, if he stays, and Costa would be in keeping with Milan's approach to transfers in recent years - hit and (mostly) miss.
Inter, meanwhile, have Romelu Lukaku leading the line and after scoring 31 goals in his debut season, there are no plans to replace him in Antonio Conte's side. But with rumours around Lautaro Martínez's future swirling about, with Barcelona reportedly interested, Costa could play alongside Lukaku, or more likely deputise for him as a substitute.