Atletico Madrid captain Gabi has tipped Chelsea striker Diego Costa to return to the Vicente Calderon during the next summer transfer window. The Spanish midfielder, meanwhile, has warned the Blues that he is convinced that Diego Simeone will stay at the La Liga side for the long-term despite reports in England have tipped the Argentinian boss as one of the main candidates to take charge of the Premier League champions since the departure of Jose Mourinho.
Costa has been linked with a move back to the La Liga side since the last summer transfer window, with the Spanish international himself fuelling the speculations earlier in December 2015 when during an interview with Onda Cero he claimed that he could follow in the footsteps of Filipe Luis,
"You never know – look where Filipe Luis is now. Life is full of surprises," he said. "I always wish Atletico the best and I always follow them, I support them from afar," he said.
AS reported during the January transfer window that Atletico Madrid eventually launched a €45m (£35m, $50.6m) offer to lure Costa back to the Vicente Calderon – but the Blues immediately turned it down.
Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo recently confirmed that the club will make a new effort to secure his services in the summer, having fresh money to spend after the departure of Jackson Martinez to Chinese Super League club Guangzhou Evergrande for £31m.
Cerezo said earlier this month: "We have a magnificent relationship with players who have left. Diego is a magnificent player, but he's a Chelsea player. We will try to do everything in our power and we'll see what Chelsea say because it's not down to us. We always try to bring in the best players and Diego is one of them".
Gabi has now backed his club to make a new attempt to secure the Spaniard services in the summer.
"(I would bring him back) because he has given a lot to this club," the captain said to Radio Marca. "It would be necessary to speak with Diego to see how in which conditions he comes but I think that he has contributed so much to this team that a second chance, a return, would never be a negative thing."
Some have suggested that Costa future could be eventually link with Simeone's. The club have been forced to get rid of key stars in recent years like Sergio Aguero, Radamel Falcao or Arda Turan and the boss condition to stay is the club to keep his leaders (Antoine Griezmann, Koke and Diego Godin specially) but also to strengthen the team with someone like Costa.
Reports in England have claimed that the Argentinian is on the shortlist of candidates to take over Chelsea in the summer. But Gabi said: "We hope that Simeone stays for a long time. I think that he the boss will only leave when the team no longer respond. We have the illusion and the mentality to keep winning and as soon the manager finds that in the dressing room he will stay here."