Diego Costa has all the attributes to be a great striker – but he should not be allowed to play for Spain, according to former international Gaizka Mendieta.
“Diego Costa is a fantastic player, but the fact he has played for Brazil before might seem a bit unfair,” said Mendieta, our Sony expert following Spain at the World Cup. “Personally, I think so. I think once you have made your mind up and you have played for a country, then that should be it.”
Costa played for Brazil, the country of his birth, in a friendly in March last year but opted to represent Spain in October after his impressive form for Atletico Madrid had caught the eye.
Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari, who says the striker is “as strong as a bull”, announced on Wednesday that he would have selected Costa in his World Cup squad. Instead it is Vicente del Bosque who will call him up, fitness permitting, into his 23-man party for the finals.
Mendieta, though, has doubts that 25-year-old Costa is the right kind of player for the world and European champion. “Is he the type of player that will fit into the national team? I’m not so sure,” he said.
“He obviously plays with a lot of aggression. He’s very aggressive and sometimes I think he pushes the limits too much. That doesn’t fit with the philosophy of the Spanish FA.”