Vicente del Bosque has reassured Diego Costa that he has no doubts about his commitment to the Spanish national team after the Chelsea striker was forced to withdraw from the latest squad with an injury picked up in Sunday's 3-2 win against Hull City.
The veteran head coach was quick to play down rumours of an alleged rift between club and country following the 26-year-old's decision to travel to Madrid for medical tests with La Roja.
Del Bosque insisted it was Costa himself that wanted to report for duty during the international break, even though it was quite clear he would play no part in forthcoming matches against Ukraine and Holland thanks to the latest setback suffered at the KC Stadium.
Article continues below
"He has a muscle tear and isn't going to play, but the lad really wanted to come, so that our medics could take a look," confirmed the 64-year-old in an interview with radio show 'Al Primer Toque'. "He wanted to present himself and ensure that nobody doubts, or lacks confidence in him."
"As far as I'm concerned, he need not have travelled, as I have the utmost confidence in the player, so the logical thing would have been not to come, but he still wanted to be here with us."
Article continues below
Costa ended a barren run of seven games without a goal in all competitions by scoring in the 1-1 draw with Southampton at Stamford Bridge on March 15 and followed up his return to the scoresheet with another Premier League strike - his 20th of the campaign - on Sunday.
However, his match ended prematurely after sustaining another injury that looks set to sideline him for several weeks, meaning Jose Mourinho could be without his leading goalscorer for the crucial end-of-season run-in.
"He's told me he feels like he's unlucky, that it seems as though he's jinxed," added Del Bosque. "That's what he's said, along with how eager he is to get out there and play for Spain."
Costa's absence from the latest Spain squad means his international hiatus will run at least until mid-June when they take on Belarus in their next Euro 2016 qualifier.
Malaga's 21-year-old striker Juanmi has been called up to replace the Chelsea marksman, whose rotten run of luck continues to hamper his contribution at that level.
"He's told me he feels like he's unlucky, that it seems as though he's jinxed," - Vicente del Bosque
It's not yet clear exactly how much domestic action - if any - the former Atletico Madrid man will miss, but Blues fans will hope he's back fit and firing in the not too distant future, or else it could affect their Premier League title challenge.
With a six-point advantage over reigning champions Manchester City and nine games still to play, there's plenty of time for Mourinho's men to slip up and be caught, especially without the predatory instinct of their most lethal finisher, who is now on his way back to west London to begin his recovery.
Chelsea fans: Do you think your side can cope with the loss of Diego Costa? Should he have travelled to Spain to link up with the squad or was it a waste of time? Have your say below…