Antonio Conte insists ‘money isn’t everything’ as Diego Costa speculation continues

Antonio Conte insists ‘money isn’t everything’ as Diego Costa speculation continues

Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte insists “money is not everything” as speculation continues regarding the possibility of Diego Costa moving to China.The Italian is set to hold talks with Costa at Chelsea’s training ground on Tuesday after the Premier League’s top scorer was left out of the squad for Saturday’s 3-0 win at Leicester after reportedly having a row with Conte.

Chinese clubs have been flexing their financial muscle this month with Oscar leaving Chelsea for Shanghai SIPG in a £60m deal and Carlos Tevez moving from Boca Juniors to Shanghai Shenhua on a reported £615,000 a week.

Costa was the subject of a £30m-per-year offer from Tianjin Quanjian but Conte believes the opportunity to play in the Premier League should be more important to players than money.

“The money is not everything,” Conte said. “When you play for a great team like Chelsea, you must be pleased. This league is really competitive. I think that this league can attract every player because this league is the first in the world for a lot of positive things.

“For this reason, I repeat these offers from China are not a threat for our league. Money is not everything.

“I have to look at the past, also in my squad. Oscar played with us, had a good offer from China, he went and I can see that threat for my players.

“But I think we’re a great club and it’s a great honour to play for Chelsea and for this reason I don’t see a threat for my players.”

Chelsea did not miss Conte on Saturday as two goals from Marcos Alonso and another from Pedro helped the Premier League leaders get their title charge back on track after their 13-game winning streak was ended by Tottenham.

“It was a good performance, a good reaction because when you win 13 games in a row and then you suffer a defeat it’s not easy,” said Conte.

“I know this from when I was a footballer, I understand this, the psychological aspect is very important. But we started very well in the FA Cup, now (we faced) a good team in the league, a very tough opponent with good players, a good manager and to come here and to win is not easy so I am very pleased.”

Source: Sky Sports