Eye On EPL

Diego Costa's bib tantrum shows scant respect for team and manager

It does seem like Jose Mourinho has finally lost patience with the great English Premier League villain Diego Costa.

After Costa's three goals in 12 games, the Chelsea manager felt that enough was enough from the misfiring striker but as events on Sunday showed, it is the Spanish international footballer who feels that he is The Special One.

Dropped for the 0-0 draw against Tottenham Hotspur, Costa sulked. He appeared disinterested during the warm-up and when he was eventually told that he would not play against Spurs, he removed his bib and flung it towards Mourinho.

He is a real moody footballer. He never plays with a smile on his face. He appears to have so much anger in him and you have to wonder just how good is his relationship with his team-mates.

This season, Mourinho has dropped Eden Hazard, Branislav Ivanovic, Nemanja Matic... all first-team players.

Costa has no right to demand that he starts in every game when all these other big names have to suffer on the bench. If he wants to have a future in the EPL, perhaps he should look at Olivier Giroud and Jamie Vardy.

I have seen my fair share of moody and angry players in my career. The other members of the team usually try to get used to these tantrums and outbursts.

But at the end of the day, having such characters is not good for the harmony in the dressing room.

Football is ultimately a team game and you cannot have people like Diego Costa ruining the team spirit.

Chelsea is a big club, they are the EPL's defending champions. When you pull on that blue shirt, you have to show why you deserve your first XI place because there are many more waiting on the bench to take your place.

Costa did well in his debut season when he scored 20 goals in 26 English Premier League games. But when Chelsea struggled this campaign, the real Diego Costa emerged.

If Mourinho had been questioned about dropping his main striker, he has been thoroughly vindicated now.

Costa was simply too disrespectful. He has no right to throw the bib at his manager. That is the behaviour of a prima donna.

This season, Mourinho has dropped Eden Hazard, Branislav Ivanovic, Nemanja Matic... all first-team players.

Costa has no right to demand that he starts in every game when all these other big names have to suffer on the bench.

If he wants to have a future in the EPL, perhaps he should look at Olivier Giroud and Jamie Vardy.

Giroud took so much flak because of his inconsistent scoring rate but he never whined when he was dropped. Instead, he kept coming off the bench to score.

Vardy, meanwhile, is easily the most impressive striker now. He came from non-league football and has now scored in a record 11 consecutive EPL games.

He is not the most talented forward out there but the Leicester City man achieved all this simply because he has the hunger.

But Chelsea are so short of strikers now. Radamel Falcao is a pale shadow of his former self while the Blues cannot gamble on Loic Remy's injury problems.

Much as I think that Mourinho will offload Costa in the January transfer window, the sulking Spanish international will probably stay with the Blues, especially if no new strikers are coming in.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 01, 2015, with the headline 'Bib tantrum shows scant respect for team, manager'. Print Edition | Subscribe