Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Cut Costa some slack, says Chelsea boss Hiddink

04 February 2016, 12:41

Watford - Guus Hiddink accused Watford of trying to provoke Diego Costa after the Chelsea striker was involved in a series of clashes during a feisty 0-0 draw at Vicarage Road.

Costa appeared fortunate to avoid a red card after he pushed over Watford defender Sebastian Prodl and then shoved Juan Carlos Paredes later in the first half.

The second offence infuriated Watford's players and finally prompted referee Mike Dean to book Costa.

The Spain international had already been given a retrospective three-game ban this season after Dean failed to send him off following clashes with Arsenal pair Laurent Koscielny and Gabriel.

But Chelsea interim manager Hiddink felt Costa was more sinned against than sinner on this occasion.

"It was very clear because we were very close. Paredes punched Diego in his back and after that they stumbled," Hiddink said.

"This is something we must not do. It's provocation to get Diego off the pitch.

"The ref saw it and didn't fall for this provocation. There's no way Diego was near the guy's face.

"This is a man's game, defenders are big guys and sometimes they go over the edge but this is something we must not do."

Hiddink said Costa never looked like losing his cool, but he did concede serial offender Costa, who reportedly punched a hole in a tunnel walk after rowing with West Bromwich Albion players recently, must do more to keep control of emotions in general.

"Yeah I talked to him but he was calm and in control, there was nothing needed to calm him down," Hiddink said.

"He felt he was provoked and when he is provoked I will protect him. Costa likes to go physical but he must do it within the rules.

"Sometimes players get physical and he has to learn to deal with it."

While most opposition managers find Costa a pain to confront, Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores has a different perspective after coaching the forward for a season at Atletico Madrid.

Flores is a big fan of Costa's fiery personality and had no complaints about his latest antics.

"It was nothing. Contact in the Premier League is normal with this kind of player. There will be contact in every single challenge," he said.

"I understand Costa, I coached him. He wants to challenge every time. It was nothing special or different happened than what goes on in every stadium in the Premier League every week."

Flores made a point of embracing Costa after his clash with Paredes in a bid to calm him down and then sought him out again to counsel him at full time.

"I told him I love him. He had great behaviour when we were at Atletico," Flores added.

"The character is the character and the character is not bad.

"For the coach this kind of character can be amazing. I prefer it to an iceman on the pitch."

Hiddink remains unbeaten in nine matches in all competitions since replacing the sacked Jose Mourinho and he would have been celebrating a victory on Wednesday but for a series of fine second-half saves from Heurelho Gomes, the Watford goalkeeper who played for the Chelsea chief at PSV Eindhoven.

"I'm disappointed because we didn't get the deserved three points," Hiddink said.

"My former goalie Gomes was the man of the match because he made some good saves.

"It's been a difficult half year for the team, but step by step we are getting back to the way we want to play."

For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page!



WRAP: English Premiership

21 October 2016, 19:13

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Apologise for attack on Auditor G...

Apologise for attack on Auditor General, President Uhuru Kenyatta is told by Kisumu Senator Anyang Nyong'o. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Quit if you can't fight corruptio...

An MP has told President Uhuru Kenyatta to quit office if he cannot fight corruption. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Investigate Uhuru, Ruto for corru...

Investigate President Uhuru Kenyatta and DP William Ruto's offices over corruption, CORD leader Raila Odinga has said. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Its a 1 horse race to State House...

Its a 1 horse race to State House, DP William Ruto has mocked the CORD Coalition. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Enjoy your time left in power, We...

CORD Co Principal Moses Wetangu'la has told the Jubilee Coalition to enjoy its last few months in power before it is voted out in the 2017 elections. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Stop hiding in State House and sa...

ODM MP's have called on President Uhuru Kenyatta to release drought aid and to stop sitting on public funds. Read more...