As the transfer window comes to a close, managers are starting to look for players to finalize their teams for the next few months of the season. In Everton’s case, manager Ronald Koeman has expressed his desire for a new striker at the end of the transfer window to help bolster the team and replace former Toffee Romelu Lukaku. There have been many discussions as to who could be that man, but the most recent talk has linked Chelsea front-man, Diego Costa, to the team on a loan move.
The striker has long been linked with a move away from the London club due to some issues with manager Antonio Conte. Costa has stated multiple times his desire to go back and play for Atletico Madrid, the team he played for before moving to Chelsea, but, with Atletico’s transfer ban in effect until January, the striker would have to wait until then to make his move to play in the 2017-18 season. Because of that, Koeman has come out and told the press that he would welcome Costa on a short-term loan deal that would end in January, when the striker would undoubtedly, finally, complete his move back to Atletico.
Now, at first glance, this move seems great. A top-notch, physical striker coming to Everton is exactly what the team needs and it would allow other offensive-minded players to move around and play positions they are more comfortable with, while having a solid target man to feed the ball to them. With a stellar goal-scoring record, he would fill the Lukaku role perfectly. From a skills standpoint, the move is great, but the talent is not the issue for Everton here.
When looking at Costa’s three years at Chelsea, they were filled with drama. Whether it be his antics on or off the field, it seemed like he was always in the paper for something bad. His attitude is certainly a question and the possibility of him going rogue and doing something crazy is higher than it should be, which could be detrimental to Everton, not only in the present, but in the future too. While Everton have brought in a lot of new talent, they also have a lot of solid young talent that will be in the locker room on a weekly basis. The fear with bringing in a player that has attitude problems is that it will rub off on the younger players and cause more problems than there needs to be, especially in a developing team on the rise like Everton. Also, the attitude problems of that player could cause problems with other veterans and, then, the chemistry of the team becomes messed up and it shows on the field in each and every performance.
Another reason this wouldn’t work would be because of Koeman’s strong personality. Costa has already shown that he can have troubles with managers who aren’t afraid to tell him how it is and Koeman is exactly that type of manager. Costa and Koeman just do not seem like a good fit and that would be an issue that grows right from the minute the transfer goes through.
Finally, the length of the loan would be concerning because, as a team looking to be successful and improve this year, a 6-month loan is only half the season. With his eyes thoroughly set on Atletico, he would be on the move in January and Everton would have to go after another striker just to keep their style of play the same. The team would, then, have to gel with that new player in the middle of their campaign, which definitely isn’t the easiest thing to do. Even during the loan, being that he would 100% be leaving in January, his eyes would be set on that and his mind wouldn’t be focused on Everton. That could mean that his play on the field is not up to par, which would be hurting the team as well.
All in all, there are just too many reasons this transfer could go badly to take the risk. Everton could be hurting the attitude and chemistry of their team all for 6 months with a player that has his mind elsewhere. It would be a high risk-high reward situation. Yes, there is a chance that Costa comes and is an important addition to the team, but there is also a chance that he isn’t and ends up hurting the team in the long run, and that is the scariest part. In the end, does it seem smart to risk a season on the transfer of one player during this rebuilding process?
The answer is no, not at all.