RUMOURS: Chelsea reject £80m bid for Diego Costa

The Blues striker has been linked with a lucrative transfer to China, but Roman Abramovich is refusing to consider his sale this season

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has intervened on a reported £80 million offer for star striker Diego Costa, according to Italian outlet TuttoMercatoWeb.

The striker, who scored 14 goals in the first half of the season for the Blues, is on the radar of Tianjin Quanjian – the same club that signed Belgian midfielder Axel Witsel earlier this week.

But Abramovich, who has been in charge of Chelsea since 2003, has sent a message to the Chinese football federation requesting they relent on any interest as they look to hand Costa a pay rise and contract extension.

If true, the news will be music to manager Antonio Conte’s ears, with Chelsea having thrived with Costa leading the attack under his stewardship in 2016-17.