Spain went to great lengths in order to persuade Diego Costa

Spain went to great lengths in order to persuade Diego Costa to represent them at international level.

This was on the back of his impressive campaign with Atletico Madrid. However, the striker has been disappointing – at least on the international scene – ever since making his appearance for Spain. The biggest disappointment came at the World Cup 2014 when the striker failed to score even a single goal in the group stages and it saw the world champions suffer a meek exit. Since his debut in 2014, the striker has made nine appearances in all competitions but has scored only one goal.

His latest blank came in the 2-0 win over Slovakia at home. Spain have got to their Euro 2016 qualification campaign back on track with five consecutive victories. It has helped them overtake Slovakia and establish a two-point advantage with only a couple of games remaining. However, the form of Costa has been a major headache for manager Vicente del Bosque. He was once again put up with questions about dropping the striker in favour of those who have been scoring goals. However, the former Real Madrid boss rejected suggestions that he is unhappy with the performance of Costa and says that the Chelsea striker will continue to be involved.

“Of course I would like him to score but he did some good work. Against a team playing so defensively the player who has the most difficult job is the one in his position. He moved well, he kept the defenders busy. We have to be patient. A lot of the time when he gets the ball he has his back to goal. I find it disgraceful that there are people who whistle a national team player. Gerard played fantastically well today,” said del Bosque while defending Gerard Pique and Costa.