China? No thanks! Diego Costa reveals World Cup desire key to his future

first_imgDiego Costa says Atletico Madrid are the only club he would leave Chelsea for, but insists he is not looking to leave the Premier League champions.The Spain international has been heavily linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge in recent months, with a big-money switch to the Chinese Super League touted as a likely destination.The 28-year-old, however, has poured cold water on the possibility of a move to the Far East, saying he wants to either stay at Chelsea or return to former club Atletico, should Blues boss Antonio Conte deem him surplus to requirements. Speaking after netting Chelsea’s goal in Saturday’s 2-1 FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal, the Brazil-born Costa told Spanish media: “There is only one team I’d go to if I have to leave here, only one.“I have no intention of leaving, I’m very happy here, I have two years on my contract, but if the club want to sell me there is one club I would go to.“Everybody knows the club I like. Atletico? Yes, everybody knows that, there’s no problem.“I will remain (at Chelsea) if there is intention from the club and the coach for me to stay, but if they want to sell me to bring in another striker, I will go.”Costa, who joined Chelsea from Atletico in 2014, added of his future: “I’m very calm, the only conversation I’ve had is with the club, for them to call my people to know what’s going to happen.“I’m going to choose my future, not them. I’m not going to change one city and country for another if it’s not Spain.“If the club really want to sell me, there’s only one team for me. “People talk too much about China. There’s a World Cup (in 2018) and if I go to China I won’t play in it.” 1 Diego Costa has said there’s only one club he’d leave for Chelsea last_img read more

Raptors Devour Nets, 104-99

first_imgTweetPinShare0 Shares TORONTO — DeMar DeRozan wouldn’t reveal exactly what was said in the Toronto Raptors’ locker room at halftime with his team down 16 points, though coach Dwane Casey’s message registered loud and clear.The Raptors roared back to beat the Brooklyn Nets 104-99 on March 8 in their first game since the franchise-record, 12-game home win streak ended March 6 against Houston.“It’s was a good one,” DeRozan said of Casey’s rallying call. “It was one that we definitely needed and the way we came out in the second half definitely speaks volumes. He came in and really got onto us and we responded like we’re supposed to.”DeRozan had 25 points, with Kyle Lowry adding 23 points and nine assists in the comeback victory from a 58-42 halftime hole that equaled Toronto’s biggest of the season, done in a loss at Golden State in November.Brook Lopez had 35 points, one shy of his season high, for the Nets, who lost the season series to the Raptors for the first time since 2009-10. Lopez was also the only Net to reach the free throw line, going 9 for 9.“He’s our horse, he’s our guy,” interim coach Tony Brown said. “He had a great game tonight and we try to do as much as possible to get him the ball because he’s one of the few guys who had it going. Hell of game by him and it’s just unfortunate we don’t get the ‘W.’”For Casey, who had emphasized the need for better defense after recent lapses against Portland and Houston, the focus is not good enough for a team that’s challenging for the Eastern Conference lead.“It shouldn’t take me going in at halftime and jumping up and down and challenging them,” he said. “We came out of the second half and that is who we have to be. But we have to start that at the beginning of the game.”The Raptors shot just 3 for 15 from the floor in the second quarter but their defense stepped up after halftime, forcing a 22-9 run to close the third before four 3-pointers in under three minutes at the start of the fourth turned a two-point deficit into a 10-point lead.“That’s a very good team,” Lopez said. “They’re in a great position in the East, they’re definitely contending in the East and contending in the league and we had a good showing. Unfortunately they went on that huge run and we weren’t able to claw quite back into it.”(PAUL ATTFIELD)last_img read more