We may whine and cry and make a scene and play the victim in the whole Diego Costa violent conduct suspension charge, but in all likelihood, our lovable anti-hero will miss two more matches, having already served one yesterday during the League Cup win at Walsall. Chelsea may yet escalate this to an arbitration hearing, but even if that goes well, the best we could hope for is Costa becoming available for next weekend's match against Southampton. I suppose it's a principle thing, or something.
In any case, with Diego sure to be absent for our trip to Newcastle this weekend, Mourinho will have to choose between Loic Remy and Falcao to lead the line. Unless he goes off script and starts Bertrand Traore, which would be fun, but also probably a bit silly. The Walsall match did not provide much of a hint as who might start on Saturday. Both Remy and Falcao were in the starting lineup, and both played basically the full match. (Falcao was our final substitution in added-on time.) Both players were a bit unlucky to not score multiple goals. Falcao did receive a few positive words from the manager post-match, but he also did a couple hilariously bad things. Remy meanwhile, playing on the right wing, which is not his natural position, did get on the scoresheet once with an assured finish.
So perhaps it will be Loic Remy to deputise. It certainly should be. He does have 3 starts versus just 1 for El Tigre, though the on-loan shadow of a former force of nature has more total appearances thanks to his constant substitute cameos. For his part, Remy is ready and raring to go.
"It's really difficult to spend so much time on the bench and then play, I can't lie. The rhythm is not the same to compare with training. When you come in, you just need to do your best, but, of course, when you are not playing much it is more difficult to do that."
"I cannot complain, though. I want to play and when the manager gives me a chance I just try to score goals and give assists. I just want to feel better and now with the games coming, maybe I have the opportunity to play more, we will see."
The biggest knock against Remy as our backup last season was that he tended to get hurt exactly when Costa was unavailable as well. That's not the case right now, so hopefully he will get his opportunities. He won't exactly be another Diego out there, but he will try his best.
"We will miss Diego because he is so important to the team and winning games, but whoever is on the pitch we just try to do the best we can. It's a shame for us to have lost him for three games."
"I don't put pressure on myself because I know my quality. The manager knows as well he can use me as a striker or on the side, so I don't have any pressure. I don't have a choice [to play more physical], I have to do it because when you play for Chelsea it's a question of giving the best, 100 per cent, every game. Of course, I will do the best I can."
Remy played for a season at Newcastle (on-loan from QPR) before his transfer to Chelsea last summer. He says it would be a pleasure to return to St. James' Park to take on his old team. Pleasure is not something we associate with trips up to the far north; perhaps Remy will change all that for us.