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Diego Costa signs pre-contract with Tianjin Quanjian ahead of €90m move — report

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This one comes from the rumor mongers at Cadena SER, so take it with as many heapings of salt as your daily nutritional needs safely allow, but according to the radio station who had sold Hazard and Courtois several times over to Real Madrid, now claims that Diego Costa has signed a pre-contract agreement with Tianjin Quanjian.

This all fits rather conveniently into all the rumors that have swirled around Costa since January as well as the recently reiterated promises from Tianjin that they want to sign a world-class striker.

Chelsea have apparently given permission for Diego to discuss personal terms and while an actual agreement will not be signed until the “middle of the month”, Diego has already committed to some sort of a pre-contract. What the benefit of signing this now only to sign the real thing two weeks from now is a mystery to me, but I’m not Super-agent Jorge Mendes, who’s been one of the key players in this whole Chinese Super League football disrupt.

As far as the numbers, El Larguero claims a salary of €30m per year for Costa (which more or less matches previous rumors) with Chelsea receiving a fee of €90m (which is a fair bit below our supposed asking price of €150m).

Given Cadena SER’s track record with regards to Chelsea transfers, it would not be surprising if all this was just a steaming pile of nonsense — they ran almost this exact same story at the start of February, even. But given the way the Costa narrative has unfolded in the past 12-24 months, it would also not be surprising if this turned out to be true.

Stay tuned.