This weekend’s Cup final could be the last time that Diego Costa faces Arsenal.

With constant speculation over his future refusing to disappear, one has to wonder how things might have been had the Gunners looked past a hefty buyout clause to sign the striker from Atletico Madrid.

The possibilities would have been endless.

Costa could’ve spearheaded Arsenal’s attack along with Giroud, or alternatively played alongside Alexis in a big-small pair.

In typical Gunners fashion however, they were put off by Atletico’s high valuation and opted not to take the risk. Yaya Sanogo was signed from Auxerre on a free transfer while Nicklas Bendtner was retained for another year, though both pieces of business seem stupid in hindsight.

There’s a good chance that Costa’s presence would’ve proven pivotal in Arsenal’s attempts to win the Premier League at least once over the past three seasons. His attacking movement, constant tendency to pressure defenders as well as his warrior-like spirit and goal-scoring ability are all qualities that Arsenal could’ve benefited greatly from, especially after Robin van Persie’s acrimonious departure to Manchester United the summer before.

Instead, however, they got Yaya Sanogo.

It’s tough to reflect on missed opportunities in the transfer market from Arsenal’s perspective. Costa has shown on multiple occasions why he’s one of the world’s best forwards. Haggling over a buyout clause seems such a naive thing to do, not least when you weigh up the risk versus the reward in signing the divisive striker.

He’s a controversial character due to his theatrics and boisterous attitude. That’s exactly what Arsenal lack.

The 28-year-old netted 20 league goals and created eight more this season but has as many bookings (2) as goals in five previous meetings against Arsene Wenger’s team.

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Football writer. Objective reviews and analysis of European football. Lifelong Arsenal fan, youth football enthusiast.