Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa looked forward to a fruitful partnership with new team mate, Luis Suarez after his side thrashed Granada 6-1 on Sunday (Sept 27), making a cheeky reference to the Uruguayan’s disciplinary problems over the years.
Costa opened the scoring with a headed goal and then came off the pitch in the second half to make way for Suarez, who quickly made his mark following his switch from Barcelona by scoring twice and providing an assist in the final 20 minutes.
“He is very good, one of us can do the fighting and the other can do the biting,” Costa said, recalling Suarez’s infamous bite on Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini in the 2014 World Cup.
The Uruguay striker also committed similar offences for Liverpool and Ajax Amsterdam, but has long been considered one of football’s best finishers.
Costa said he could barely believe his side’s luck in landing Suarez, who scored 198 goals in six seasons with Barca but was deemed surplus to requirements by new coach Ronald Koeman.
“We are very lucky to have Luis, I don’t understand how Barca could have let him leave,” Costa said.
“He’s going to help us with lots of goals as well as his warrior spirit and his hunger to win trophies. I hope he can help us win another trophy for our fans, but we need to take each game as it comes.”
Costa, who fired Atletico to the La Liga title in 2014 but has struggled since returning from Chelsea in 2018, has been linked with a move away from the club but vowed to fight for his place, while declaring he will leave if necessary.
“I don’t want to fight with them and become a drain on the club, I’ve spoken to the club and the coach, and told them I’m ready to leave if they think I should go,” he said.
“But if I stay, I’m going to fight to play and I hope I don’t get injured so I can get a good run of games. I have to make the most of my opportunities. Anything can happen this season, the important thing is to be ready and score goals.”
Suarez is also relishing his new challenge at Atletico and feels that switching clubs could be just what he needed.
“Barca reached a point where they decided they needed a change and some fresh air, so it was important to accept that and change club,” the 33-year-old told Spanish network Movistar.
“For a player, sometimes, it’s important to make a change and I’ve come to club who have given me a spectacular welcome. You can sense that there is a very good atmosphere around the club and today, we saw it on the pitch.
“The team were in a good place when I came on and I just wanted to kill the game off. I’m very happy with my debut and for the three points. When you make your debut and help the team with goals, you’re always going to be happy.”
Atletico coach Diego Simeone highlighted Suarez’s work off the ball as well as his goals.
“I’m not just pleased with his two goals but also his assist, his movement and his runs,” said the Argentinian.
“His arrival will generate a lot of internal competition and if all 23 players in the squad accept the minutes they are given, then I’m sure we’ll compete well.
“The arrival of an important player like Suarez will always improve the team but we were already working very well.”