A year ago, Diego Costa was fighting for playing time behind the in-demand Radamel Falcao. This year, Costa has made the striker position his own, and has taken Atletico Madrid to second in La Liga and level on points with first place Barcelona.
Despite sharing space with David Villa, the 25 year old has scored 15 times in 15 games with an assist to boot. Christiano Ronaldo is the only player to have scored more, with 17 to his name. All of this is exceedingly better than last season’s haul of 10 goals and seven assists in 31 games at the Vincente Calderon.
Villa has the next highest goal tally for Atleti with eight, which goes to show how important Costa is to the team going forward. He has created 23 total chances, good enough for second most on the team, and has a shooting accuracy of 69 percent.
In 2013, Costa, who had already made two appearances for the Brazilian National Team, opted to play for the Spanish National Team instead, a nation where he said he felt most at home.
Costa will have more competition for the forward spot in the Spanish national side than he would with Brazil. Villa, Alvaro Negrado, Fernando Torres and Roberto Soldado will all be vying for the starting spot. With that said, Costa deserves it most.
As of now, he is the most in form striker in La Liga, and maybe even the world. He would add a toughness to the fanciful possession style that La Furia Roja has used to dominate all competition in the last five years.
Spain will be thoroughly tested in Group B, as they must face off against the Netherlands and Chile to earn a spot in the next round.
Costa has all the tools to maintain Spain’s international success, and should be their first-choice striker when the World Cup begins next summer.