Diego Simeone reveals how Atletico Madrid sealed Diego Costa return

Everton want Kevin Gameiro in January

Everton want Kevin Gameiro in January

Diego Simeone has revealed the Spanish side had been attempting to get Costa to return to the club since previous year.

Speaking on "El Larguero" radio show, Simeone said he is always looking to drive his players on to give more to the cause, while maintaining that Griezmann had "spoiled" Atletico by winning games for them in the past. "There is less margin for error now".

Asked about the defeat to Chelsea last week he added: 'We had never faced a team with the intensity of Chelsea.

"We struggled to press them effectively". We improved when (Antoine) Griezmann went on (Tiemoue) Bakayoko and left David Luiz free.

Simeone took Griezmann off at the weekend as Atletico failed to beat Madrid minnows Leganes. I was convinced he would not go anywhere'.

CESAR MANSO  GettyImages
CESAR MANSO GettyImages

"I spoke a lot with him and if he had not made the effort this summer the transfer would not have been possible".

Simeone also revealed in the interview that the signing Costa of was made possible by the player's fall-out with Conte keeping his price down.

And the Atletico boss has admitted the transfer would not have been possible had the Spain global not kicked up a fuss this summer.

"Of the players who could bring us closer to the top, Diego Costa was the chosen one", Simeone said. Another one of that level or better and we would not be able to afford. He brings together all the qualities of goals, workrate, effort and leadership'.

"That being said, I believe Costa and Vitolo will find it hard to get into our team especially when I look at the players we already have - everyone will have to earn their place".

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