Diego Costa doesn’t have many friends left in football and he can now pretty much cross Alan Shearer off his Christmas Card list as well.
Although the former Newcastle man admitted that he usually enjoys the striker’s ‘aggressive’ style, he believed that on Saturday he completely crossed the line on several occasions.
“I like him, I’m a fan of his and I like the way he plays, I like the way he’s aggressive,” Shearer admitted. “But there’s a line and he crossed that line today, on more than one occasion.
“This, I hate… trying to get Coquelin booked with his reaction. I hate that, I really do. He should get a yellow card himself for doing it, that’s the law.”
The former striker also brought up Gabriels inability to just let the situation go and for getting involved in the first place. Koscielny was admirably calm about the whole ordeal; his temperament and professionalism outweighed any anger he felt. But for a certain fiery Brazilian, Costa’s actions were too blatant to ignore.
Shearer continued, “With Koscielny, his hands… two in the face. He knows what he’s doing, he intends to catch him and he could be sent off if the referee sees that. He really is an angry man, you can see him scratch Gabriel, he’s winding Gabriel up… it’s got nothing to do with him at all.
“And then he’s still at it, little slap, right in front of the referee. He’s sucked Gabriel right in, and Gabriel is absolutely pathetic for falling for it, he really is.”
On one hand, you can’t blame Gabriel at all for getting involved. Pundits and fans are always harping on about our lack of comradery and how we don’t back each other up on the pitch and that’s precisely what the centre-back was doing – helping his partner. This, I can’t bring myself to be annoyed about.
However, the backwards kick was stupid. Costa saw he’d fired Gabriel up and knew all too well that if he kept pushing his buttons, the defender would snap. And he did.
Gabriel completely played into his hands.