Scolari: Diego Costa is a powerful beast

The Selecao boss still regrets the striker's decision to snub the country of his birth and believes his decision was motivated by opening up his club options in Europe

Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari has labelled Diego Costa a "powerful beast" and says he would definitely have named him in his World Cup squad had he not opted to play for Spain.

Costa played two friendlies for the country of his birth in March 2013, but after a drawn out saga opted to represent the reigning world and European champions instead.

"I was going to summon him for the World Cup," Scolari was quoted as saying by O Estado de Sao Paulo.

"Diego Costa would be with us. He could play as a seven, a nine, or even as an 11. I’d thought about playing him up front to run and smash through. He’s a powerful beast. He's strong as a bull.

"Was I wrong? I don't know, but he would be at the World Cup with Brazil. I talked to him twice about it.

"The problem is there were other interests behind it. With Diego Costa becoming a naturalised Spaniard, that opened up his options in Europe. There's a whole set of interests."

Costa has made one appearance for Spain, playing 90 minutes in their 1-0 win over Italy in March, but the striker's World Cup campaign ironically hangs in the balance due to a hamstring injury.