'Costa deal still in the works' - Tianjin to challenge Europe's elite in transfer market

Diego Costa Chelsea Premier League
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The Chinese side saw their approaches for Chelsea striker Diego Costa knocked back, but are still hoping to sign Europe's best players

Tianjin Quanjian are still trying to sign Chelsea star Diego Costa, the Chinese Super League side's owner has revealed, as they look to compete with Europe's elite clubs in the transfer market.

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Tianjin made an approach for the striker ahead of the current campaign, but the Blues opted to hold onto the 28-year-old. 

Goal understands Tianjin and three other teams, Guangzhou Evergrande, Hebei China Fortune and Jiangsu Suning, are ready to compete for him.

While Tianjin owner Shu Yuhui admits his side are still interested in signing the Spain international, but have their sights set on other high-profile targets.

"I can only say that we are still working on the deal [to sign Diego Costa]. And we have already made contacts with several players,” he told Sina Sports

"We have high standards [when it comes to buying foreign players] and those players prefer top clubs such as Bayern Munich and Real Madrid. It’s safe to say that we have the same transfer targets as those illustrious clubs. 

"We may have to pay bigger price because our club are now competing with Real Madrid & Bayern Munich.

"As for who will join us in June, let’s wait and see."