The £35m signing from Atletico Madrid spearheaded Chelsea's attack against Vitesse and provided two assists in a powerful and unselfish display in the pre-season friendlyChelsea resumed their pre-season programme against Vitesse on Wednesday evening, eventually running out 3-1 winners over their Dutch feeder club.
Jose Mourinho began the game with £35million summer signing Diego Costa leading the line, the Spaniard continuing his preparations for the new season against the Eredivisie club. Here Goal runs the rule over his display.
|PERFORMANCE AGAINST VITESSE
The Spain striker started quickly in a solid display, beating the offside trap and racing in on goal before squaring for Mohamed Salah to open the scoring after just four minutes. A constant menace with his pace and power, Costa continued to occupy the Dutch side's backline, even snapping at one Vitesse defender following a particularly late challenge, living up to his 'Beast' nickname.
Rarely knocked off the ball, Costa often drifted to the left wing and set up Nemanja Matic to round off the scoring, having again beaten the Vitesse defence before laying the ball off for the midfielder to tap home.
Despite not getting on the scoresheet, Costa can be pleased with his unselfish performance as he looks to regain his sharpness ahead of the big kick-off against Burnley on August 18.
|WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD?|
Signed for £35m, Costa faces the pressure of living up to his pricetag, with fellow Spaniard Fernando Torres offering a tale of caution for the former Atletico Madrid star. The £50m man has visibly regressed at Stamford Bridge, and is now a shell of the striker who once lit up the Premier League at Liverpool.
Costa must make sure he does not fall into the same trap as his compatriot – and Andriy Shevchenko and Adrian Mutu – and the best way to avoid a dip in form is to bang in the goals on a regular basis.
Didier Drogba has rejoined the club and the star would do well to follow the example of the Ivory Coast international. Acquired from Marseille during his original stay, Drogba became a hero as he scored over 150 goals and eventually slotted home the penalty that won the club the Champions League.
If Costa can emulate his new team-mate he will thrive in west London.
|A GOOD SEASON WOULD BE...|
Elite strikers are few and far between but Costa has proved in recent seasons that he is capable of breathing the rarefied air currently inhaled by the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Radamel Falcao.
A terrifying spearhead in a spring-loaded Atletico Madrid attack, the 25-year-old netted 36 goals in all competitions in 2013-14 and a similar return in his first season in England would undoubtedly make him the leading candidate for the Golden Boot.
Signed to finally transform Jose Mourinho's “little horses” into stallions, Costa simply cannot afford to flop – he is the last piece in the Special One's jigsaw – but, given the acclimatisation period that will likely be needed following his move, a return of half his La Liga tally would arguably constitute success at Stamford Bridge this term.
Still young, Costa can only improve and a solid – if unspectacular – first campaign would be sufficient as he looks to lay the foundations on which to build his Chelsea career.