Chelsea striker Diego Costa is adamant that he's getting a raw deal compared to other strikers in the Premier League, but is far more concerned with finding peak physical form in time for Sunday's Capital One Cup final against Tottenham Hotspur.
Costa is still dealing with the fallout of retrospective punishment from the Football Association for a stamp on Liverpool defender Emre Can, an incident he still insists was not intentional.
The Brazilian-born powerhouse returned to action against Burnley last weekend and was well below his fearsome best, something he's acutely aware ahead of leading the line at Wembley.
Chelsea right to be concerned
Costa is adamant there's only one objective now on his mind after the fuss of the last three weeks, winning his first trophy for Chelsea and playing a meaningful part in that success.
The £32.5m man told The Guardian: “The suspension has gone. It’s one thing that happened, and now I’m just trying to get back to my best physical form. You have just to forget about it.
Costa admits he's a little bit behind
"I joined a club like Chelsea to win titles. As we say, finals are not there to be played. They are there to be won. I will go into the game with the mentality and have the motivation to come away with the title."
By his own outrageously high standards Costa has endured something of a lean spell in 2015, failing to score in his last four starts for Chelsea.
Sunday would be the perfect time to end that barren spell, although the 26-year-old has conceded he's still searching for 100% fitness after a string of injury niggles over the last 12 months.
Costa said: “After last season I had a few [hamstring] injuries and then, when I was on top form and was playing at my best, I had that suspension – and I still don’t even know why that happened.
"Now, I’m running a little bit behind, trying to do my best, working hard and hopefully I’ll be 100%. As for not scoring recently, that doesn’t worry me. The truth is I didn’t even know how many games it has been.
"What worries me is to be in the best physical form to score goals. Never mind the opposition. We all know we are a good team and we have the quality to win.”
Expect Chelsea's big-match player to produce
Blues boss Jose Mourinho may not openly admit it, but he might actually see the benefit of Costa's enforced spell on the sidelines in this weekend's all-London League Cup showdown.
Costa will be fresh and full of frustration, which is terrible news if you're a Tottenham Hotspur fan.
Wembley's massive pitch will suits the Blues and they're ability to press high were needed and retain possession in advanced areas, which plays right into Costa' hands.
18 goals in 31 games is proof Costa already has a tremendous track record in English football, a debut appearance at the national stadium will be something of a forward of his quality will absolutely relish.
Chelsea fans, are you confident Costa will fire the team to glory on Sunday? Let us know by having your say in the comment box below!
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