BE PART OF THE TEAM

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership

Become A Member
Dublin: 9°C Monday 10 May 2021
Advertisement

Diego Costa on the differences between playing in England and Spain

The Chelsea striker says that opponents can get away with more in the Premier League.

Costa has scored 20 goals this season for Chelsea, while drawing criticism for his abrasive style.
Costa has scored 20 goals this season for Chelsea, while drawing criticism for his abrasive style.

CHELSEA STRIKER DIEGO Costa says that he has had to rise above provocation from Premier League defences.

In his first season at Stamford Bridge, the Spain international has already scored 19 top-flight goals, adapting quickly to the physical challenge of the division.

Costa has been involved in his fair share of scrapes with the opposition, his uncompromising style often drawing criticism, but he argues that defenders give as good as they get.

“They’re no less dirty than the defences in Spain but I’m not complaining,” he told Marca of his opponents in England.

“They go in strongly but the referees won’t give it as a foul — in Spain, they would.

“Some try to take me out of the game but, each time, I control myself more and focus on my own game.”

Be part
of the team

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership.

Become a Member

Costa netted his 20th goal of the season in all competitions against Hull City on Sunday but will miss Spain’s games against Ukraine and Netherlands after suffering a hamstring injury at the KC Stadium.

Meanwhile, the striker believes a hectic festive fixture list may have played a role in Chelsea’s disappointing Champions League exit against Paris Saint-Germain earlier this month.

Jose Mourinho’s men squandered winning positions three times over two legs against the Ligue 1 champions to find themselves eliminated from the tournament at the round-of-16 stage on the away goals rule.

Chelsea’s results and performances have also declined more generally since a shock 5-3 New Year’s Day defeat to Tottenham — the last of four matches in 11 days over the Christmas period — though a first Premier League title in five years is still beckoning.

Mourinho has been criticised this season, however, for refusing to rotate beyond a small core of established first-team starters, while the lack of a winter break in English football has been a running topic of debate for many years.

“Maybe the Christmas exertions have taken their toll,” Costa told Marca. “We played three matches in seven days. It’s no excuse though. I’m sure next season we’ll go further in the Champions League.”

Ireland v Poland: History shows draws not enough>

Three of Ireland’s Euro 2016 rivals were in friendly action last night>

About the author:

The42 Team

Read next:

COMMENTS (12)