REVEALED: The real reason why Costa was at a business dinner with Mendes

The Blues striker was invited to dine in an exclusive London restaurant by his agent which fuelled more speculation that he is moving to China


Speculation surrounding the future of Diego Costa was fuelled on Friday after the Chelsea striker was pictured at an Italian restaurant along with Jorge Mendes and a host of businessmen.

The pictures, which appeared in the Sun newspaper , showed Costa, who has been linked with a move to Atletico Madrid and the Chinese Super League (CSL), in the company of 'super agent' Mendes and other individuals at dinner.

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However, Goal sources have said that the meeting in London eatery Signor Sassi is thought to have been related to the future of Premier League club Southampton, rather than that of the Spain international.

A group of Chinese investors from Lander Sports Development are looking to purchase the club from current Saints owner Katharina Liebherr.

Diego Costa

Mendes and Costa almost always get together when the agent visits England's capital and, despite the picture offering little insight into the future of Chelsea's leading goalscorer, it does show an interesting development in the Southampton takeover bid.

Southampton are thought to have received a £190 million bid from the Chinese consortium but current owner Liebherr is hoping for around £270m and the deal is thought to be nearly done. 

Costa remains a target for four CSL clubs, namely Tianjin Quanjian, Guangzhou Evergrande, Hebei China Fortune and Jiangsu Suning. Atletico Madrid also remain interested after Costa recently admitted that he failed to push through a move to his old club last summer. 

Chelsea are hopeful that he will sign a new deal but they have a shortlist of other striking targets ahead of the summer transfer window, including Everton's Romelu Lukaku and Real Madrid's Alvaro Morata.