Costa calls for Atleti return

Bayern Munich hitman Robert Lewandowski

While China appears to be a potential destination for the Chelsea outcast, the player has his heart set on a move to former club Atletico Madrid, where he gained widespread recognition as one of the continent's most feared strikers.

Earlier this month the striker claimed he had received a message from boss Antonio Conte telling him he was not in Chelsea's plans for their title defence.

While on global duty - after a 2-2 draw with Colombia - Costa claimed: "Antonio Conte has told me by message that I will not continue with Chelsea and that's it".

On Thursday, Sky Sport Italia journalist Gianluca Di Marzio has an update on the future of Costa.

Atletico still have their transfer ban in place after CAS bizarrely refused the reduce their punishment despite overturning Real Madrid's for virtually the same sin, breaking rules by registering young players.

Interestingly, should Costa leave Chelsea for Atleti, he wouldn't actually be able to feature for them whilst their transfer embargo is in effect - meaning he would have to wait to become registered in January before taking to the field.

Chelsea initially asked for 100 million euros to sign Costa. Atletico Madrid are also keen on signing, as it may just be the force that can push Atletico Madrid to the next level, as another world class talent may join. Both Barcelona and Premier League champions Chelsea are reportedly interested in his services.

Romelu Lukaku has been strongly linked with a return to Stamford Bridge from Everton.

It leaves Costa seemingly content to remain on the sidelines until January in order to secure a reunion with a side he has previously scored 54 goals in 114 appearances in all competitions.

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