Mourinho denies Diego Costa rift

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has denied suggestions of a rift between himself and Diego Costa and expressed happiness with how his decision to drop the striker for Sunday’s 0-0 draw with Tottenham worked out.

The striker was seen arguing with the Portuguese during the 4-0 win over Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Champions League in midweek, a row Mourinho claimed was settled with “a few kisses and cuddles” at half-time.

However, Costa was omitted from the starting line-up for the trip to White Hart Lane and, having not participated in the warm-up, threw his bib in the manager’s direction after Ruben Loftus-Cheek entered as the final substitute in second-half stoppage time.

“[There is] not an issue, not at all. It was just a decision and I think we played really well, the dynamic was really good,” Mourinho told BT Sport.

“I don’t like my subs to warm up. I just want them to be mentally ready to play when I need them.

“During the second half when I felt that I could eventually use one of them, they went to warm up and he was ready to play.

“[Eden] Hazard and Oscar appeared in dangerous positions, the same as Pedro, so the game went in the direction we wanted to take it.

“I’m really happy with my decision.”

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