Diego Costa’s Chelsea resurgence under new boss Antonio Conte has been an impressive sight, with the Brazil-born Spain striker sitting joint-top of the Premier League scoring charts with four goals so far this season, the latest couple coming in his side’s 2-2 draw at Swansea.
A whopping haul of 20 goals in 26 top-fight fixtures during his first campaign in England, which ended with the Blues being crowned champions, was followed by the more modest tally of 12 in 28 last term as Chelsea slumped to a mid-table finish.
The 27-year-old’s return to goalscoring form has given the four-time Premier League champions a massive boost in their 11/2 quest to regain the title, although finding the back of the net isn’t the only old trick Costa has been up to.
West Ham boss Slaven Bilic insisted the striker shouldn’t have been on the pitch to score an 89th-minute winner in Chelsea’s opening-weekend win at home to the Irons, after a studs-up lunge at visiting goalkeeper Adrian’s right leg didn’t even draw a second yellow card.
Costa has already been booked three times in the Premier League this term, taking his caution tally in the English top flight to 19 in 36 appearances, with one red picked up against Everton last March and a couple of retroactive suspensions for violent conduct thrown in.
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp insists he won’t encourage his players to wind Costa up ahead of the Reds’ Friday Night Football visit to Stamford Bridge, but all recent evidence suggests the bruising centre-forward is skating on extremely thin ice.
You can have 28/1 with Ladbrokes about Costa dominating the headlines by scoring and seeing red in west London, which shouldn’t be sniffed at.
Chelsea are 5/4 favourites to beat Liverpool at Stamford Bridge, something they’ve managed just once in the Merseysiders’ past six Premier League visits, with Klopp’s men 23/10 for the win and the draw 5/2.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.