Chelsea: French superstar alerts Blues; Costa defends himself; debate over youngster's future

The Blues have been put on alert as Antoine Griezmann has made a shock choice which could pave the way for him to make a move to Stamford Bridge in the near future. The Telegraph report that the Frenchman has ditched his agent and will now represent himself following the advice of his father and advisor, who first gave him an offer in professional football at Real Sociedad, when it comes to contract and transfer matters.

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Chelsea are believed to have been tracking Griezmann for around two years as they prepare a bid when the time is right, though it still remains unclear when that will be. With renewed speculation over Diego Simeone’s future, it could come sooner rather than later. Should Griezmann line up alongside the likes of Eden Hazard and Diego Costa, it would be an impressive attacking set-up for Antonio Conte as he attempts to bring the Premier League title back to Stamford Bridge.

Speaking of Diego Costa, the combative forward has spoken out against his critics with his physical style attracting a lot of criticism in the opening weeks of the season, as he could easily have seen red on two or three occasions only one month into the campaign, with his three yellow cards to date attracting as much attention as his goal-scoring start to the season. He explained that:

When we go to the pitch, we want to win, that’s all we want to do. And when the game finishes, if you win, you go home happy. If I lose a game, it’s a different frame of mind when I finish the match… you always have to know that you are going to leave everything on the pitch, every drop of sweat, to help the team win the game. I don’t like losing, I don’t like to be in a losing position and I show this a lot. I demonstrate on the pitch.

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The Spaniard has been in fine form after a torrid time last season, but Blues bosses will be concerned that his poor discipline on the pitch may end up costing him game time, with rumours already circulating that he could face action over some of his behaviour. It is nothing new to Costa, who has never been given a red card in a Chelsea shirt despite his poor disciplinary record.

Another forward at Chelsea is Izzy Brown, the 19-year-old currently out on loan at Rotherham after scoring just once in 22 league games at Vitesse Arnhem in Holland last season. Steve Hopcroft, his youth team manager at West Brom before he moved to London, has slammed his decision to leave, telling the BBC:

It might turn out to be a correct decision. At the moment it doesn’t look a great decision… I thought he was the best of all the players that have left here… He’s the one that got away for me. The manager at the time, Steve Clarke, was ready to make him an integral part of the team. He could have gone on to play a similar number of games as Saido Berahino. he could have made his 100th appearance for West Brom and be in a better position than he is now… We had a potential £20-£30-£40 million player that the fans would have loved, full of flair and skill. He could take on six players from his own half and score.

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Brown has made just one first team appearance for the Blues, coincidentally as a substitute at his former club, but is yet to have any impact on the first team, and whether or not he breaks into the picture for the starting XI in the near future could make or break his career at such a young age.

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