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Diego Costa must solve his club situation to make Spain comeback - Julen Lopetegui

Spain head coach Julen Lopetegui has reiterated that Chelsea striker Diego Costa should find a solution to his club future in order to return to the national team fold.


The Spain international has not played a competitive game since representing La Roja in a 2-1 victory over Macedonia in a World Cup qualifier in June.

Following the game, Costa had received a text message from Antonio Conte citing that he was longer part of his first-team plans and the 28-year-old has since refused to return to Blues training in order to push through an exit. Atletico Madrid looked favourites to sign him during the summer transfer window, but they were not prepared to pay a hefty chunk knowing that they could only play him until January when their transfer ban concludes.

Speaking to BEIN Sports, Lopetegui is hopeful that Costa will soon solve his club crisis as he would have to prove his fitness in order to return to the national setup, he said: "Costa's summer has been unusual, strange, complicated -- not just for him but for his club. He is still a Chelsea player. It's a complicated issue. Our hope is that he will resolve his situation as soon as possible and that he can compete, train and play, which is what he likes doing the most and what interests the national team."

The Brazilian-born striker was left out of Spain's squad for the qualifiers against Italy and Liechtenstein earlier this month, and Lopetegui admits that it could be a similar case when he announces his team for the remaining fixtures against Albania and Israel, he added: "It's rather complicated that a guy who doesn't train and doesn't play can be with us."

Meanwhile, a report from Marca suggests that Atletico Madrid have lodged a final take or leave offer of £57m for Costa as they look to re-sign him in the winter transfer window. Costa has been hugely successful during his short spell in west London, lifting two Premier League titles and one League Cup in his three-year stay.

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