New Premier League season, same old Diego Costa.
Since arriving in England from Atletico Madrid in 2014, Costa has quickly carved out a reputation as one of the biggest bastards to ever set foot in the Premier League.
He’s headbutted, elbowed and hacked his way through nearly every defender he’s came up against, but somehow seems to think he’s the victim.
On Monday night, the Chelsea striker was already booked when he slide tackled West Ham United goalkeeper Adrian, leaving his studs imprinted on his countryman’s shin.
Costa escaped caution, and went on to score the winner in the dying moments of the game to get Antonio Conte’s reign as manager off to a good start.
But one thing that was even stranger than Costa not being sent off were the striker’s comments, after he had the cheek to claim he was being singled out by English referees.
Speaking to ESPN Brasil, Costa said:
I’ll be honest, I am targeted here, by the referees, the people… if I do something, it’s totally different than if any other players do.
It needs to be seen, that people target me.
It’s something I have to deal with and I ask God that these things don’t disturb me and don’t take the sequence of the games from me, which happens sometimes and gives me suspensions.
Does anyone feel sorry for poor Diego? No? Me neither.
It’s clear that some people do get targeted for their reputations, such as Lee Cattermole and Marouane Fellaini.
It’s also clear that Costa could start a fight in an empty room, and that he’s usually the one instigating clashes by mouthing off at defenders and hacking down goalkeepers, so it’s hard to sympathise.
The quotes do nothing to rid the rumours that the Spanish international is unhappy in England, after seeing a return to Atletico Madrid fall through this summer.
Diego Simeone wanted the 27-year-old back at the Vicente Calderon, but instead signed Sevilla’s Kevin Gameiro, leaving Costa to battle it out with Premier League defenders for another season.