Chelsea’s prolific forward Diego Costa looks to have picked up a hamstring injury in the Blues’ recent game against Hull City. The injury will see him sit out Spain’s Euro 2016 Qualifier against Ukraine, as well as their International Friendly against the Netherlands.
Costa has notched up 19 goals in his 23 league appearances since signing for Chelsea from the Spanish side Atletico Madrid. He is leading the way in the race for the Golden Boot, with Harry Kane having also scored 19 goals but after 26 appearances, meaning that Costa has a goal every 0.83 games compared to Kane’s 0.73.
It isn’t the first time the striker has suffered a hamstring injury, with the same problem – mixed with a viral infection – causing him to miss four matches earlier in the season.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho isn’t overly concerned about the injury, however. With his team sitting six points clear of Manchester City with a game in hand, the Portuguese chief said, “If he cannot play in the next game against Stoke in 15 days, we have [Loic] Remy, we have Didier Drogba”.
Costa’s hamstring issues were well known to Chelsea when they signed him, given that the same thing also caused him to leave the pitch within just nine minutes of last season’s Champion’s League Final.
Costa’s appearance in the Final was surrounded by controversy, having spent the week before the game undergoing intense treatment – including his hamstring being massaged with horse placenta – in order to see him start the match. But it was to no avail, with the injury striking again before Real Madrid went on to beat their neighbours by four goals to one.
The £32 million signing was well and truly over the disappointment by the time he made his first start for the Blues, however, as he went on to score the equalizer against Burnley at Turf Moor in Chelsea’s opening game of the season.
With 10 games left, and a maximum of 30 points available, Mourinho will be hoping that this time the injury doesn’t last too long – and that they won’t need to get the horse placenta out any time soon, either.
Chelsea still have to face Arsenal, Liverpool and a resurgent Manchester United before the title race is run and, whatever Mourinho might say to the contrary, the Blues will definitely be a weaker prospect without the Spanish front man leading the line.