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Five Aside


2015/2016 Season

2 Real Madrid 28 6 4 90
3 Atletico 28 4 6 88
4 Villarreal 18 10 10 64
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Chelsea striker Diego Costa would be welcome back at Atletico Madrid - Gabi

The ESPN FC crew discuss Fernando Torres scoring his 100th goal for Atletico Madrid in their win versus Eibar.
The ESPN FC team discuss Barcelona's defeat of Atletico Madrid and the impact of Atletico going down to nine men.

Atletico Madrid captain Gabi says he would be very pleased if the reports linking Chelsea striker Diego Costa with a return to the La Liga club turn out to be true.

Costa was a key player as Atletico won the 2013/14 La Liga title and 2013 Copa del Rey during his previous spell at the Estadio Vicente Calderon, and after moving to Chelsea for €38 million in the summer of 2014 he won a Premier League winner's medal while scoring 20 goals in 26 league appearances during his first season.

However reports that the Brazil-born Spain international has never fully settled in London persist and there has been mounting speculation that both he and Atletico would be interested in a reunion if it can be made financially possible.

Diego Costa spearheaded Atletico's double-winning season in 2013/14.

The Los Colchoneros skipper told Radio Marca that it would "not be bad" to have Costa as a teammate again.

"Diego brought us a lot, so a second return would never be a bad thing," Gabi said.

Atletico may be able to fund a big money summer move, having sold Jackson Martinez for €42m to Chinese club Guangzhou Evergrande - and Gabi admitted that the Colombia international never really settled during his seven month spell at the Calderon.

"When he was signed we were all excited," he said. "Jackson came from Porto, was top scorer there, a top player. But the reality is it didn't work out here, Jackson just did not fit into the team, his way of working did not click. There were never any reproaches for him, as he was trying to do as well as possible."

The future of another Atletico striker is also uncertain, with Fernando Torres' contract set to end in June with no certain offer to renew.

"We still have three months for Fernando to be decisive, for him to help us achieve our objectives, and the club will decide what is best," Gabi said. "If Fernando is at his best over these three months, I imagine Atletico Madrid would want to renew his contract."

Gabi also spoke about his role in the ongoing criminal trial into a potential fix in a La Liga game between Real Zaragoza and Levante played in April 2011 -- with La Liga president Javier Tebas having previously claimed that those involved could even face prison.

"I understand what Tebas said," the former Zaragoza midfielder said. "It affected me before, but at the moment it does not. I am very relaxed about it. I do not know how it will end up."


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