London: Diego Costa could be back in the Chelsea starting line-up against Hull on Sunday after recovering from a back injury and after improving ties with the Premier League leaders' manager Antonio Conte, British media reported Wednesday.
The 28-year-old striker — whose 14 goals this season has spurred Chelsea to a seven-point lead at the top of the table — was pictured at the club's training ground hugging fitness coach Julio Tous, with whom apparently he had a row last week over the level of his fitness and amid reports of a big-money offer from China.
The Spanish international is back training with the rest of the squad having trained on his own at the start of the week.
Both the volatile Brazil-born star and Conte claimed he had a back injury after he was omitted from the squad for last Saturday's 3-0 win over champions Leicester.
However, Costa was also said to have had his head turned by a bid from Chinese club Tianjin Quanjian, who were reportedly willing to offer him £30 million (35 million euros, $37 million) a year.
"I can tell you if there are problems — and I repeat 'if' — with players, I am used to solving them in the changing rooms, not outside, not in press conferences," Conte said after the win over Leicester.
"Trust me, what I told you is the truth (about the back injury)."
Chelsea will play relegation battling Hull City on Sunday at 10PM IST.
Published Date: Jan 18, 2017 15:55 PM | Updated Date: Jan 18, 2017 15:55 PM