Costa to return for PSG clash

Published: Monday 16th February 2015 by The News Editor

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Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho will start Diego Costa in Tuesday night’s Champions League last-16 first leg at Paris St Germain, but does not expect his prolific striker to be at his best following his disputed suspension.

The Brazil-born Spain striker was banned retrospectively for three matches for treading on Liverpool’s Emre Can in the Capital One Cup semi-final victory, provoking Mourinho’s ire.

Costa, who has 17 goals in 19 Premier League games this term, missed the matches with Manchester City, Aston Villa and Everton, but will come straight into the starting line-up at Parc des Princes as he bids for a first European goal for the Blues.

Mourinho said: “Yes, I start him. But I don’t think it’s good for a player to be three weeks or three matches without starting a game. So I don’t think he’s in the best of his condition.”

Chelsea overturned a 3-1 first-leg deficit to win the quarter-final tie between the sides last term on away goals, courtesy of Eden Hazard’s penalty in Paris and Demba Ba’s last-gasp decisive strike at Stamford Bridge.

David Luiz, who left Chelsea for PSG last summer in a £50million deal, believes Mourinho’s side are stronger this term.

Mourinho said: “I’m not here to comment what opponents (say), even being David. I don’t want to comment.

“We beat them, but we lost. And we lost in Paris and again knockout competition was decided in the last minute. A detail makes a difference.

“I’m not saying we won because we were better than Paris. We won because we scored a goal away and we didn’t concede at home.

“Paris is a great team and is basically the same team as last season, with David Luiz. Same team, same coach, same dynamic, same profile.

“They have conditions to be better. When you have stability you can always improve.

“Chelsea is a different team. We have some different players, we change a little bit the profile of our game, the identity of our game.

“I don’t want to say we are better or not better. I’m saying that we change the profile of our game, so I believe that tomorrow Parc des Princes will see a different Chelsea than last season.”

Published: Monday 16th February 2015 by The News Editor

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