Reports from multiple outlets in the UK claim that Diego Costa trained on his own on Monday.
[ MORE: Europe’s 100 most valuable ]
That shouldn’t be too surprising but anything to do with Costa right now is news.
Costa, 28, was left out of Chelsea’s squad for the 3-0 victory at Leicester City on Saturday but manager Antonio Conte cited a back injury for the absence of the Premier League’s leading scorer who has 14 goals and five assists this season.
However, reports emerged last Friday that Costa was involved in a training ground bust up last Tuesday with a member of Chelsea’s medical staff and had a heated debate with Conte. Couple that with reports of a monster contract offer of over $40 million per year from the Chinese Super League and you have, reportedly, a player in turmoil.
Pro Soccer Talk can confirm that Chelsea’s players who played on Saturday were given two days off by Conte, so the vast majority of the squad were not in training on Monday.
Photos taken on Monday (below) show Costa on his own at Chelsea’s Cobham base on Monday and he has supposedly been working on his own for the past two days as he tries to regain full fitness.
All of this will add further fuel to the fire that Costa has been exiled from the first team due to his supposed row with Conte, but it must be noted that it is not uncommon for players returning from an injury to train on their own until they get back up to speed.
It is thought that Costa has been working hard in the past two days in individual sessions to prove to Conte and his staff that he can return to first team training. Whatever you want to believe is going on, Costa’s importance to Chelsea is clear as their top scorer is needed back fast despite their seven-point lead at the PL’s summit.
Chelsea is a different team without Costa and although Eden Hazard and Co. breezed past Leicester at the weekend, they didn’t look the same in attack and they need Costa back ASAP.
Both Costa and Conte should put their differences aside, but it seems as though Conte will be the one who will be dictating the next step and its up to Costa to make amends.