Diego Costa insists that he is heading back to Atletico Madrid with “no bitterness” towards Antonio Conte and all of those at Chelsea.
The 28-year-old has finally got his wish of securing a return to the Spanish capital following a testing few months which saw him spend the summer transfer window away from Stamford Bridge waiting on a deal.
With the deadline having passed with no move put in place, and with Atletico working under the restrictions of a transfer ban, Costa was included in Chelsea’s Premier League squad and expected back at training.
He was, however, to remain AWOL after being frozen out by Conte, with the Italian having revealed that he took the decision to part with the fiery frontman once transfer talk was sparked in January – amid intense links to the Chinese Super League.
Costa, though, insists that he bears no grudge towards anyone at Chelsea, with his focus now locked on the future.
He told Splash News when pressed on whether he was upset by Conte’s treatment of him in west London: "There's nothing of the sort there, I'm not upset with anybody, I have no bitterness towards anyone. Everything is cool."
Costa was speaking at an airport in Sao Paulo as he finally prepares to return to Europe.
He is delighted to have seen a protracted saga brought to a close, with everybody now free to move on with their respective careers.
The Spain international will, however, continue to hold fond memories of his time in England, with his goals having helped to secure two Premier League titles.
Asked if he had a message for the supporters he is leaving behind at Stamford Bridge, Costa said: "Everybody knows how much I love the fans."
Costa, who netted 64 times during a previous stint at Atletico which included a La Liga title win, will be free to open the next chapter in his career from January.
Diego Simeone will be hoping that he can hit the ground running, with the powerful frontman set to form a fearsome strike partnership with France international Antoine Griezmann at Wanda Metropolitano.