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Chelsea dealt Costa injury blow

Costa takes a tumble against Everton. Photo courtesy:
Costa takes a tumble against Everton. Photo courtesy:
Costa takes a tumble against Everton. Photo courtesy:

Chelsea’s striker woes are mounting. Barely a few days after manager Guus Hiddink said he will be looking to tap into the January transfer market to find additional strike options, his star forward, Diego Costa, bruised his tibia during Saturday’s 3-3 draw against Everton. How long he will be consigned to the sidelines will only be revealed after extensive tests.

Costa asked to undergo scans after he limped off following a clash with Everton’s Leighton Baines. While the scans show no fracture – only bruising – the striker may be out of the game against Arsenal on Sunday. The 27-year-old Brazilian opted for immediate treatment at Chelsea’s Surrey training base, despite being given two days off.

At Stamford Bridge, Costa got Chelsea back in the game as the Blues came back from 2-0 down to level at 2-2. Later, John Terry’s controversial last-gasp goal in stoppage time gave the home team a point from a 3-3 draw.

The former Atletico Madrid striker had scored just seven times since January last year before Jose Mourinho left last month; Costa now has five goals in his last five games. And this is the sort of efficiency that Chelsea will miss. Hiddink does have Loic Remy at his disposal and it looks all too likely that the Frenchman will start at Arsenal. But, with Radamel Falcao out since October with a thigh problem, Remy represents the sum total of striking options available to the Chelsea manager.

The latest injury to Costa could see Chelsea make a move for a striker in the transfer window, although whether the player they want or need is available in mid-season remains to be seen.

Hiddink on Friday suggested teams making signings in January were “desperate”.

Chelsea have been linked with a host of strikers of late, including Jamie Vardy, although it is hard to see him leaving title-chasing Leicester for the fallen Premier League champions.

The Blues are 14th with 16 games to go and well adrift of Champions League qualification.

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