Diego Costa 'reaches pre-agreement' with Tianjin Quanjian as Chelsea target Alvaro Morata

Eduardo Fernandez-Abascal
International Business Times
Diego Costa
Diego Costa

Chelsea striker Diego Costa has reportedly reached a pre-agreement with Tianjin Quanjian to complete a move to the Chinese Super League in the coming summer transfer window. Cadena Ser claims that the Blues would receive up to €90m (£76.2m, $98.2m) for his services and will automatically reinvest the money in another number nine – with Manchester United target Alvaro Morata topping Antonio Conte's shopping list.

Costa, 28, was already heavily linked with a move to Tianjin Quanjian during the January transfer window after been left out of the Chelsea squad for a 3-0 victory over Leicester City amid a row with Conte over his fitness.

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The owner of the Chinese outfit, Shu Yuhui, revealed then that his club had made an offer to sign the Chelsea striker only days before that row.

"I made an appointment with [agent Pedro] Mendes and he came to my hometown to visit me. At that time, we were interested in signing Costa. PSG told us [Edinson] Cavani would only be allowed to leave in June, even though the player himself was willing to join us." Shu said.

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"The same can be said for Costa because Chelsea would only let him leave in June. However, the new season of the Chinese Super League will almost reach the halfway stage in June, we can't wait that long."

Costa finally stayed at Chelsea as the Blues refused to part way with their top scorer at mid-season.

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But Cadena Ser now reports that the move is back on the table and the Spanish international will join Tianjin Quanjian in the coming summer transfer window.

The Spanish radio station claims that last Friday Costa and his agent Jorge Mendes met Tianjin Quanjian officials in a London restaurant to iron the terms an agreement worth €30m a year.

They reportedly reached a pre-agreement and during the current month of May will put pen to paper on the final deal to complete the move.

Cadena Ser adds that Chelsea are aware about the negotiations as Conte is ready to sanction a move that will see the Blues receiving up to €90m for a player that the Blues signed from Atletico Madrid for €40m.

The Spanish radio station adds that Conte is already planning for a life without Costa and has identified Alvaro Morata as his perfect replacement.

Chelsea's interest in the Real Madrid striker is not new either. The Blues already made a formal offer to sign him during the last summer transfer window. Last month the striker admitted that he would love to work with Conte in the future after the Italian played a big role in his move to Juventus in 2014 – although they never worked together as Conte resigned from his post with La Vecchia Signora just days later.

Now, according to Cadena Ser, the double deal could happen as Conte continues to have regular contact with Morata and will have fresh money to spend from Costa's sale.

However, the Blues are expected to face competition from Manchester United to sign Morata as last week Cadena Ser claimed that Manchester United are also interested in the Spaniard.

Nevertheless, Jose Mourinho was the manager who handed Morata his first-team debut at Real Madrid and, according to the reports, has also personally called the Real Madrid ace to reunite with him at United.

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