The Football Association have confirmed that Diego Costa will serve a further one-match ban and have to pay a £20,000 fine after the Chelsea player admitted improper conduct charges.
Costa, who was born in Brazil but plays international football for Spain because he was granted citizenship there, was charged by the FA for his reaction to his sending off in Chelsea’s FA Cup quarter-final match against Everton at Goodison Park on March the 12th. Costa was sent off for a second bookable offence and then had a run-in with Everton’s Gareth Barry.
Costa appeared to bite Barry, though the former England international later made clear that no contact had been made between the two players. Costa was given a two match ban initially but that has now been extended to three matches after an FA investigation into the matter.
The first match that the 27-year-old missed was the 2-2 draw with West Ham that was played before the international break, with the second scheduled to be Saturday’s game against Aston Villa at Villa Park. He will not also miss Chelsea’s game against Swansea on April the 9th.
Costa was sent off in the 84th minute of the FA Cup match after receiving two yellow cards, earning himself the first on-pitch red card of his Chelsea career. He has been punished retrospectively by the FA on a number of occasions. He was given a three-match retrospective ban after altercations with Laurent Koscielny and Gabriel when Chelsea played Arsenal in September, for example.
Costa was instrumental in Chelsea’s title win of last season before the goals dried up at the start of this campaign, with some Blues’ fans partially blaming the striker for the club’s dreadful start to the season that resulted in the sacking of former manager Jose Mourinho. The self-proclaimed ‘Special One’ was sacked last year after over-seeing Chelsea’s worst start to a league campaign since the 1960s.
Guus Hiddink replaced the Portuguese boss on an interim basis and Costa has so far scored eleven goals in the last sixteen games under the Dutchman. With the Blues’ still in the bottom half of the Premier League and without the Brazilian-born Spanish international for at least the next two matches, Hiddink has said that he’s prepared to ‘experiment’ with his squad for the remainder of the season.