Atletico Madrid striker Kevin Gameiro has confirmed that manager Diego Simeone wanted to re-sign Diego Costa in the summer transfer window.
Costa, who was heavily linked with a return to the Spanish giants over the summer, was persuaded to stay at Stamford Bridge by boss Antonio Conte.
Atletico gaffer Diego Simeone wanted to bolster his options in the summer transfer window after losing out to local rivals Real Madrid in the Champions League for the second time in three years.
But Simeone’s bid for Costa was rejected and he then moved on to sign Sevilla striker Gameiro for a staggering £32million.
In an interview with Cadena COPE, Gameiro said: “El Cholo [Simeone] phoned me and told me he wanted Diego Costa, but it was very difficult and I was the other option.
“There was the possibility of going to Barcelona, but in my head it was clear I wanted to go to Atletico. When Atletico contacted me, it was clear!
“Now I’m in Madrid and that’s the main thing.” he added.
Gameiro’s switch to the Vicente Calderon Stadium quickly silenced rumours linking 27-year-old Costa with a return, a move that prompted the current Chelsea forward to confess that he was close to a transfer back to Spain.
In an interview with TV network Movistar, Costa said: “Everybody knows there was a possibility of going back to Atletico but it didn’t happen because of a few details.
“I thank the fans and Cholo [Simeone] for his faith. Now I’m at Chelsea, I’m happy there and I’ve started the season with them.
“I hope Atletico do well this season like last year and win titles.
“I wanted to go back, I won’t lie about it.” he added.
By Drew Darbyshire (@DarbySports)