Diego Costa's troublesome hamstring could require surgery, according to an audacious claim from The Daily Mail's Neil Ashton.
A report in Yahoo Sports cites comments from Ashton made on NBCSN's Premier League live. The Spaniard has been in blistering form and a lengthy layoff could cost Chelsea dear.
Plagued by his hamstring difficulties, Costa has failed to maintain fitness recently, due to a combination of his hamstring and a viral infection, and has been absent for Chelsea's recent fixtures against Manchester United, Maribor and Crystal Palace.
The talismanic forward has struck on nine occasions in seven league games thus far into the new campaign, and has formed a prolific partnership with compatriot Cesc Fàbregas at Chelsea.
Statistically, Costa has been the best striker in the league to date this season, scoring over a third of Chelsea's goals so far this season, notching nine of Chelsea's 24 goals. The prolific centre-forward also averages a goal every 65 minutes.
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These stats are the cold proof that Costa's potential absence has the potential to derail Chelsea's steamrolling opening to the season.
If the claims are to be believed, Costa would miss out on six weeks worth of action, which could prove costly, as was the case on Sunday when Chelsea were just not on a par with their performances that did feature the Spaniard.
However, the potential surgery would not be required immediately and could be performed during an international break or, if Costa can last long enough, at the culmination of the season.