Costa absent but still no start for Batshuayi


Diego Costa's absence from the Chelsea squad was not enough to see Michy Batshuayi handed a start in Saturday's clash with Premier League champions Leicester City.

Spain striker Costa - rumoured to be the target of a big-money bid from Chinese Super League side Tianjin Quanjian - was dropped after a reported bust-up with manager Antonio Conte and fitness coach Julio Tous in training this week.

It is understood the disagreement centred on Costa's fitness, with the 28-year-old having missed three days of training in the build-up to this weekend's match at the King Power Stadium.

Batshuayi, who scored in the 4-1 FA Cup win over third-tier Peterborough United last time out, has not made a start in the Premier League since signing from Marseille in July.

With 14 goals, Costa is the joint top-scorer in the division, helping Conte's side to the summit following an abysmal defence of their title last term, when the Foxes took full advantage.