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Diego Costa.

Antonio Conte explains why he refused to sub off Diego Costa despite argument

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Diego Costa continued his fine goalscoring form on Saturday, notching his sixth strike of the season to help Chelsea overcome Leicester City 3-0.

However, as is often the case with the Spanish striker, Costa's day wasn't all positive. Indeed, with the game wrapped up in the second half, he appeared to get in a very heated argument with Blues boss Antonio Conte.

The issue - seen in a video below - was that Costa wanted to be substituted off, presumably so he avoided picking up a booking that would rule him out of Chelsea's upcoming fixture against Manchester United. Conte, though, refused to buckle to his player's demands and the Italian manager has now revealed exactly why.

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In comments relayed by the Daily Mail, Conte said:

"I kept Costa on until the end of the game because he is an important player for us.

"He has a good personality and he transfers that passion. We need that passion every moment of the game though I knew it was a risk because he if he took another yellow card, he misses the next match."

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Just how vital it was for Costa to remain on the pitch with Chelsea in front and in command against the reigning Premier League champions, is up for debate.

After all, Conte did have £30 million summer signing Michy Batshuayi sitting on the bench behind him as Costa pleaded to be removed from the action.

FBL-ENG-PR-WATFORD-CHELSEA

Fortunately for Costa, Chelsea and Conte, the Spanish international managed to keep his cool after the outburst towards his manager and he saw out the remainder of the game without picking up that crucial yellow card.

Conte, though, was willing to take the criticism if his gamble to ignore his player had backfired and Costa had been made unavailable for Chelsea's game against United.

"I decide every substitution, me. Always I take the responsibility in a positive or negative situation," he said, again via the Mail.

Chelsea fans reacting to the unusual confrontation between star and manager have been split in their reaction.

Plenty of supporters were critical of Costa showing a lack of respect for his manager and losing his cool. Others, though, think Conte took an unnecessary risk in keeping the striker on the pitch.

One thing is for sure, today's incident at Stamford Bridge showed us yet again that Diego Costa isn't your typical striker. And, as you might expect, he isn't afraid of voicing his opinion.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Diego Costa
Frank Lampard
Chelsea
UEFA Champions League
John Terry
Eden Hazard

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