Soccer

Arsenal respond to Diego Costa transfer link

Arsenal have played down links with a move for former Chelsea striker Diego Costa, according to reports.

The 32-year-old is available on a free transfer after terminating his contract with Atletico Madrid earlier this week.

Costa had started just two games for Atletico this season having fallen down the pecking order following the arrival of Luis Suarez from Barcelona in the summer.

Reports in Spain have claimed that Arsenal have been monitoring the striker’s situation with a view to a potential move in the January transfer window.

But according to The Athletic, sources at Arsenal have distanced themselves from a move for Costa and claim the club have made no approach so far.

The report also claims that Atletico would be in line for a €15 million (£13.6m) payment if Costa joins Barcelona, Sevilla or a club in the Champions League.

In his message to Atletico supporters on Wednesday, Costa wrote: ‘I want to thank all the fans, but I think that my moment arrived and that for me, as well as for the club, it was the best thing that could happen,’ part of his statement on Instagram read.

‘I think it’s the best moment for both of us, and the best way to help this team and the club.

‘I have given my best, or at least, I always tried to give my best for this club and this shirt.’

Meanwhile, Arsenal have also been linked with a move for Real Madrid midfielder Isco.

The Gunners are reportedly exploring the possibility of a loan deal which would run until the end of the season.

However, when asked about a potential move for Isco after Arsenal’s win over Brighton on Tuesday, Mikel Arteta said: ‘Obviously we cannot talk about individual players.’

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