Chelsea striker Diego Costa says he has been told by manager Antonio Conte that he does not have a future at Stamford Bridge.

The striker has been linked with a move away from the Premier League champions for much of the past season, despite having scored 22 goals in all competitions.

Costa was tipped for a move to the lucrative Chinese Super League in January only to commit to Chelsea for the remainder of the campaign, but his future has been cast into fresh doubt since reports emerged linking the Blues with a bid for Everton striker Romelu Lukaku.

The 28-year-old Costa has now stated that Conte has informed him he is free to look for another club and believes his dip in form in the second half of the season is behind the decision.

“I had a simple little message on my mobile from Conte in which he said that he isn’t counting on me for next season,” Costa told the media following Spain’s 2-2 friendly draw with Colombia on Wednesday.

It’s a shame, I’ve already forwarded the message to Chelsea people to decide. But it is clear that the coach does not count on me and does not want me there. You have to find a team.”

The striker has his heart set on a return to Atletico Madrid, though that move would be delayed due to the Spanish club’s transfer embargo.

“It would be nice to return to Atletico, but it is difficult to be four-five months without playing,” Costa added in quotes reported by Marca. “Being five months without playing? I do not know, it’s complicated, but people know that I love Atletico a lot and that I love living in Madrid.

“It would be nice to go back, but it’s difficult to be four-five months without playing. It’s a World Cup year and there’s a lot to think about. I need to play, that’s all. “

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Chelsea striker Diego Costa says he has been told by manager Antonio Conte that he does not have a future at Stamford Bridge. The striker has been linked with a move away from the Premier League champions for much of the past season, despite having scored 22 goals in all...