'Better than Neymar and Hazard' - Costa hailed as 'the best' by Atletico team-mate Filipe Luis

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The prolific frontman has returned to the Spanish capital from Chelsea, much to the delight of a Brazilian colleague who holds him in high regard

Diego Costa is “the best” in the eyes of Filipe Luis, with the striker held in higher regard than Neymar and Eden Hazard by his Atletico Madrid team-mate.

The 29-year-old has returned to the Spanish capital after three seasons in England with Chelsea, during which time he helped the Blues to two Premier League titles.

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A protracted chase has seen a £57 million deal put in place, with Atletico set to push the agreement through once their transfer ban is lifted in January.

Brazil international Luis is delighted to have Costa back - having also played alongside him at Stamford Bridge - with the powerful forward having shown his talismanic qualities in the past to earn a standing among the greats of the modern era.

"[Costa] is the best I have played with," Luis told El Mundo.

"I have seen [Juan Carlos] Valeron do things nobody could do. Neymar and [Eden] Hazard are amazing talents, but the player who gave me most trophies was Diego Costa.

“He always scores the opening goal. Because it is one thing to score 30 goals with hat-tricks in easy wins, and another that 20 of those 30 goals are enough to win 1-0. Nobody does that as well as Diego Costa."

Diego Costa Filipe Luis the best

Once Costa is freed to open a second chapter with Atletico, he will get the opportunity to form a fearsome partnership with Antoine Griezmann.

It appeared at one stage over the summer that the France international could be moving on, but interest from the likes of Manchester United eventually came to nothing and the 26-year-old committed to a new five-year contract.

Luis said on that saga: "[Griezmann] is a kid who speaks very clearly.

"Often players talk when they feel they are not being valued as they deserve. Then they get more attention.

“He would have had many offers from many teams. A player of his size wants to be up with the biggest in terms of contract and value. And that is fair - as Griezmann is doing great here.

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"In the end, for all the talk about other clubs, he always wanted to stay here and he is still here, happy and liking it.

“For sure, he can stay much longer. We hope the fans understand this and everything gets back to normal, although he has been scoring goals, and goals cure everything."

Griezmann has three goals in seven appearances this season, having plundered 26 in all competitions last term and 86 in just 167 outings for Atletico.

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