Cesc Fabregas believes former Chelsea teammate Diego Costa can win World Cup Golden Boot
The Brazil-born striker endured a miserable campaign four years ago representing his adopted country as Vicente Del Bosques side crashed out at the group stages after losing their opening two matches.
Spains campaign began on Friday, two days after Julen Lopetegui was sacked as head coach after he was confirmed as Real Madrids new mananger, but Costa and his teammates shrugged off that drama to record a 3-3 draw against Portugal.
Costa scored twice and was only denied the man of the match award by Cristiano Ronaldos stunning late free kick and Fabregas believes his former teammate is reaping the rewards of having spent three years in the Premier League with Chelsea.
He told the Daily Telegraph: My old team-mate Diego Costa also showed that he can be a big player in this tournament and that he can challenge for the Golden Boot. Why not?
The first thing I did after game was to text him because he deserves a moment like this. Its a shame Cristiano took the headlines, but Diego did well.
The last World Cup was a difficult time for him, especially being in Brazil in front of his family and his friends. It was a big decision to play for another country. But I think he feels like he owes a lot to Spain for his career – with Atletico Madrid, Rayo Vallecano, Valladolid and Celta Vigo.
Diego used to play in the Brazilian team when we split into nations for small-sided games at Chelsea. He played with Kenedy, David Luiz and Willian. I used to give him some stick about that, but we had a lot of Spanish players and Brazil were missing a player of his type so we let them have him.
He has been criticised many times for his style of play with Spain. People say its not the same as the other players, he plays too different and blah, blah, blah. So Friday nights game shows he can be so, so important and thats why I was delighted for him.
At Chelsea, in the last few years he improved a lot his first touch and his combination play. Before he was more of a runner, he didnt like the ball to his feet too much but he improved a lot and I believe now he is ready to play in any type of style.
He is also good for the squad off the pitch. Maybe with Spain he is a little bit more reserved than he was at Chelsea, but he is the way he is. He is always a positive influence.
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