Thursday, January 28

Conte wouldn’t last a season at Real Madrid, says Costa

The pair won a Premier League title together at Chelsea but were also involved in a high-profile feud
Antonio Conte may have won league titles in Italy and England, but the Inter coach would not last a season in charge of Real Madrid, according to Diego Costa.

The Italian is regarded as one of Europe’s top coaches following spells in charge of Juventus and Chelsea.

Conte won three consecutive Serie A titles with the Bianconeri and spent two years in England, where he guided the Blues to Premier League and FA Cup success.

During his spell at Chelsea, Conte had run-ins with Costa and told the striker via text message that he was not wanted at the club.

The Spain international eventually left to return to Atletico Madrid and has been a vocal critic of the coach and Chelsea since then.

Costa, 31, says he no longer has a problem with Conte and admits he is a talented coach, even if he lacks the “human” touch needed to succeed at a team like Real.

“[Conte and I] had problems off the pitch, but I think he is a really good manager,” Costa said to ESPN.

“I have no hard feelings towards Conte, but to be a top, top manager, he needs to change the human side of his management. He is very suspicious. At a team like, say, Real Madrid, he would never last a season.”

Although he was born in Brazil, Costa made just two appearances for the national team before switching his allegiance to Spain.

The striker faced criticism for his decision, but he says former Brazil boss Luiz Felipe Scolari made it an easy one.

“After the friendly against Russia, he said he would call me up again because I hadn’t played many minutes,” he added. “I think it was just to get in my head.

“I remember several forwards were injured but Scolari would not select me. I stayed quiet, but wasn’t selected for the Confederations Cup.

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