Diego Costa has lit up the back of the Premier League nets in his first season in England, but outside of matches, things have been a struggle.
According to Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho, the Blues striker is doing “almost nothing” during training as he looks to get his hamstring back to full strength.
“He cannot be on top of his game,” said Mourinho. “He’s doing almost nothing in training. He’s just resting and recovering from the tight muscle he has.”
The Chelsea manager used this opportunity to make a plea to the Spanish national team not to call in Costa for the next international break, adding that if he were to use it to rest, it could benefit everyone involved.
“If he doesn’t go to the national team and if he stays here for 15 days just on treatment, he has the perfect chance to be top for Chelsea and top for the national team,” Mourinho said. “If he doesn’t have this period, it will be always, plays one game, the other is in trouble, the muscle is tight, the muscle is in danger of rupture.”
With Euro qualifiers under way, Spain would want their in-form striker for early October matches against Slovakia and Luxembourg. Mourinho admitted he has no control over what the national team does, but he was pleading with Vicente del Bosque not to play Costa.
“Mentally, he [Costa] is ready for every game. Physically he’s not. Everyone is trying hard for him to be able to play every game.”
Yesterday Mourinho spoke about how little effect he has on national team decisions, despite the fact he sees players every day in training.
“I’m nobody,” the 51-year-old manager said. “The moment the national team selects a Chelsea player, I’m nobody. It’s their decision, they can do what they want, they can call the players, they can play, and it’s completely out of my control. What I see and what I feel doesn’t play a part.”
He added they continue to go “week to week” with Costa’s fitness.