Diego Costa Profile
|Born||Oct 07, 1998|
|Birthplace||Lagarto, Sergipe, Brazil|
Title-winner in Spain and England is well known for his aggressive style and was once voted 'most hated footballer'.
Diego Costa is a Brazilian-born forward who currently plays for Atletico Madrid and the Spanish national side. He has won the Europa League, La Liga and three UEFA Super Cup titles with Atletico. He also won two Premier League titles with Chelsea during his time in England.
Costa is a physical striker, best known for his aggression and aerial ability. He is a controversial figure and was named the 'most hated footballer' by French newspaper L'Equipe in 2015.
Costa made two appearances for the Brazilian national side in 2013 before receiving Spanish nationality later that year. The Spanish FA made an official request to FIFA for permission to call him up, which was approved because he had only played in friendly matches for the country of his birth. Costa made his Spain debut in March 2014 and went on to represent the national side at the 2014 and 2018 World Cups.
Diego Costa: From lone ranger to title winner at Atletico
Costa began his career at Braga before joining Penafiel on loan. He joined Atletico Madrid in January 2007 and returned to Braga on loan. He was also loaned out to Celta Vigo and Albacete.
Costa joined Real Valladolid in 2009 and finished the season as their top scorer before returning to Atletico. He suffered a serious knee injury in the summer of 2011 which stopped a move to Turkish giants Besiktas. The forward then joined Rayo Vallecano on loan, again finishing as his side's top scorer.
Costa finally broke into the Atletico side in the 2012/13 season. The forward finished as top scorer in the Copa del Rey with eight goals, including securing the equaliser in a 2-1 win over local rivals Real Madrid in the final.
In 2013/14, Costa scored 27 La Liga goals as Atletico won La Liga for the first time since 1996. He also scored eight goals in Europe as Diego Simeone's men reached the Champions League final for the first time in 40 years. However, the forward was forced off with a hamstring injury just eight minutes into the final against Real Madrid, which Atletico lost 4-1, after extra time.
After spending three years in England, Costa rejoined Atletico in September 2017. He came off the bench to score against Lleida Esportiu in his first game back. Later that season, the forward scored the winning goal in the Europa League semi-final against Arsenal. He played in the final as Simeone's men earned a 3-0 win over Marseille in Lyon.
Early in the 2018/19 season, Costa bagged a brace in a 4-2 win over Real Madrid in the UEFA Super Cup, securing the trophy for the third time in his career. In April 2019, he was given an eight-match ban for abusing a referee.
Chelsea move and Premier League success
In July 2014, Chelsea met the Â£32million release clause in Costa's contract, bringing the forward to Stamford Bridge. He made an immediate impact for the Blues, scoring on his debut in a 3-1 win over Burnley.
In January 2015, the forward was given a three-match ban for stamping on Liverpool midfielder Emre Can. After his return from suspension, Costa was on target as Chelsea earned a 2-0 win over Tottenham in the League Cup final, which secured his first piece of silverware in England. Several weeks later, the Blues clinched the Premier League title after a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace. Costa finished the season with 20 goals and was named in the PFA Team of the Year.
However, the Blues' 2015/16 campaign got off to a slow start and popular manager Jose Mourinho was sacked in December. Guus Hiddink was given the job for the remainder of the season and Costa bagged a brace in his first game in charge - a 2-2 draw with Watford. Chelsea finished in 10th place in the Premier League that season.
Former Italy manager Antonio Conte took charge at Stamford Bridge for the 2016/17 campaign and Costa was soon back to his best. However, the pair fell out in January 2017 and he was briefly dropped from the team. Chelsea went on to claim the Premier League title and Costa finished as their top scorer with 20 goals. He was also on target in the FA Cup final as the Blues were beaten by Arsenal at Wembley.
Costa's poor relationship with Conte led to the end of his time in England. The forward was told he was not part of the manager's plans via text message. He returned to Brazil to train alone and expressed his desire to rejoin former club Atletico Madrid, claiming he was being treated like a "criminal". Costa eventually got his wish in September 2017 when Chelsea accepted a Â£57million bid from the Spanish side.
Diego Costa's international switch from Brazil to Spain
In March 2013, Costa made his Brazil debut as a substitute in a 2-2 draw with Italy. He also featured in a 1-1 draw with Russia.
The forward was granted Spanish nationality in July 2013 and the Spanish FA made an official request to FIFA for permission to call him up. The request was approved because Costa had only played in friendly matches for Brazil. Luiz Felipe Scolari, Brazil manager at the time, said: "He is turning his back on a dream of millions, to represent our national team, the five-time champions in a World Cup in Brazil."
Costa made his Spain debut in March 2014 in a 1-0 win over Italy. The forward was called up for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil but his only contribution was winning a penalty in a 5-1 defeat to the Netherlands, with Spain failing to reach the knockout stage.
Costa scored his first international goal in a 4-0 win over Luxembourg in October 2014. However, he was left out of the Euro 2016 squad, which was knocked out by Italy in the Round of 16.
Costa was recalled for the 2018 World Cup in Russia and scored a double in a 3-3 draw with Portugal in the group stage. Five days later, he was on target in a 1-0 win over Iran. However, Spain were knocked out in the last 16, losing to hosts Russia on penalties.
Diego Costa's personal life
Diego Costa was born in Lagarto, Brazil, to parents Jose de Jesus and Josileide. He was named after Argentina football legend Diego Maradona, despite the rivalry between the two countries.
The forward grew up playing street soccer and has set up an academy in his hometown, for which he pays all costs, as when growing up he thought he would never make it as a professional due to how remote his hometown is.
As a youngster, Costa played alongside his brother, Jair. Despite a three-month trial at Salvatierra, Jair was unable to make it as a professional footballer.
Costa supports Palmeiras.
Diego Costa's net worth
Costa signed an endorsement deal with Adidas in February 2014, joining the likes of Lionel Messi, Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez in doing so. "The brand has a fantastic history but they are also at the forefront when it comes to innovation, which is why I was drawn to them so much," he said.
The forward has earned an annual salary of Â£13million in the past 12 months, meaning he misses out on Forbes' World's Highest Paid Athletes list.