June 9, 2023

Antonio Conte explains bizarre decision not to sub Diego Costa against Leicester

October 15, 2016

ANTONIO CONTE has said he didn’t sub Diego Costa because Chelsea required his passion for the entire match.

Conte’s side routed Claudio Ranieri’s Leicester 3-0 at Stamford Bridge today.

And towards the end of the game Costa was signalling furiously to the bench that he wanted to be substituted off.

The Spanish striker has already accumulated four yellow cards in the Premier League this season, leaving him one caution away from missing a game.

And with Chelsea’s next game a crucial clash with Manchester United, Costa was desperate to leave the field to avoid risking another booking.

But Conte was having none of it and decided to leave his star striker on the pitch for the full 90 minutes.

Speaking after the game, Conte explained his reasoning.

“If I can I want to keep Costa on until the end, he’s an important player with great personality,” said the Italian boss.

“I know it was a risk because if he got another yellow card he would miss the next game but his passion is important for the team and he must transfer this in every minute of the game.

“I always take the responsibility in every situation, positive or negative, substitutions are always my decision.”

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