Cost-a-packet. Diego not going to China for €100m, say Tianjin

May 5 – Tianjin Quanjian have denied Chelsea striker Diego Costa has agreed to move to the Chinese Super League after reports in Spain claimed the Brazilian-born striker would move in the summer for an Asian record-breaking $100 million fee.

Tianjin, coached by Italian World Cup winner Fabio Cannavaro and last season’s Chinese second division champions, denied they had entered into any negotiations.

“Regarding the widely spread rumour of the transfer of Chelsea player Diego Costa to Tianjin, we hereby declare that so far we have not communicated with Costa regarding a transfer,” read a statement on the club’s official Weibo account.

Spanish newspaper Cadena Ser reported on Thursday that Costa had met with officials from the club along with his agent, Jorge Mendes, and a deal had been struck.

The newspaper said the forward would join Tianjin from Chelsea for €90 million ($98.78 million), with Costa receiving a salary of 30 million euros ($32.93 million) per year.

That would set a new Asian record and eclipse the highest amount paid by a Chinese club for a foreign player, the €60 million euros Shanghai SIPG spent to lure Brazilian forward Oscar – also from Chelsea – in January.

Tianjin were also linked with a move for Costa, who has scored 19 times in the league this season but whose goals have dried up of late, in the January window. The British media have long speculated that he would leave Stamford Bridge at the end of this season.

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