Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has warned off clubs attempting to poach prized asset Diego Costa, according to Sky Sports.
Costa's performances in the Liga BBVA and Champions League this season has seen his list of admirers grow considerably. The Brazilian-born-striker has 21 goals in 24 league games this campaign, only one goal away from Cristiano Ronaldo in the race for the La Liga golden boot.
However, Cerezo is adamant that the star striker is going nowhere this summer:
"I don't believe Diego Costa is leaving the club next season, we won't sell him next season, but that won't stop other clubs from wanting him,"he said, as he spoke to reporters at Complutense University of Madrid.
A possible swap deal involving on loan goalkeeper has been mooted or even a return for Fernando Torres. However Cerezo has rejected this idea:
"Undoubtedly we don't want to use any player as a bargaining chip for some other player. You can see this in that we never sell but other teams come for our players,"
"Diego wants to play with the Spanish national team and that has been an important decision," Cerezo added. He likes Spain, lives here, and believes it is better for him."
Despite Cerezo's claim, Atletico's technical director Andrea Berta conceded that the club can only afford to keep their star players for one more year:
"We are a company and in order to keep functioning properly, must sell each year. However, we believe we can keep our players for at least one more season."
Atletico Madrid have been forced to sell the likes of Fernando Torres, Sergio Aguero and Radamel Falcao in recent years and may be unable to hold onto Diego Costa for too long if the top European clubs back up their interest with big money bids.
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