Atletico Madrid are planning to lodge a £26m bid for Chelsea striker Diego Costa this week, according to The Mirror.
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has made it clear to Costa that he no longer wants him at the club.
Earlier this month, BBC Sport revealed that the Italian coach informed his player by text that he was not wanted.
In the message, Conte thanked Costa for his work during the club’s Premier League-winning season, but added that the forward was not in his plans.
The Mirror now reports that Atletico want Costa back and will launch a bid that should eventually – with add-ons – match the £32m that Chelsea paid for him in 2014.
The only problem is that the Spanish club are banned from registering new players until January, and because of that, they reportedly want Chelsea to keep him until the winter.
They will also ask the West London outfit not to include Costa in their Champions League squad as he may be needed for Atletico in the latter stages of the competition.
According to The Mirror, the 28-year-old is keen on returning to his former club.
Last January, Costa was heavily linked with a lucrative move to the Chinese Super League, but it is believed that he is no longer keen to switch to the Far East.
Considering the reported manner in which the striker has been told that he is no longer wanted at Chelsea, he should look to cut ties before pre-season.
Atletico is his desired destination after spending four years of his career at the Vicente Calderon, but he will have to accept that he cannot join them until December due to a transfer ban.
If Costa and Chelsea can come to an agreement that would see him feature off the bench, then it is worth the forward waiting a few months in order to get the move he wants.
It is important for him to receive game time, though, whether that is in the first team or elsewhere, as Atletico will not want him to take too long to get up to speed.