Diego Costa's decision to make public an exchange of text messages with manager Antonio Conte, in which the Italian apparently confirmed the striker has no future with Chelsea, could end up costing the Premier League champions millions of pounds.
Speaking after last night's win over Macedonia, Costa told radio station Onda Cero: "To sign for Atletico does not mean I wouldn't play".
Antonio Conte dumped Diego Costa with a 27-word text message which started with a cheerful greeting and ended with "you're not in my plans". "But now it's all easier, because if the coach doesn't want you in the team, Chelsea will have to sell me no matter what, and at a discount".
Costa has his heart set on a return to Atletico Madrid, though that move would be delayed due to the Spanish club's transfer embargo.
Wales' Aaron Ramsey, right, challenges Serbia's Nemanja Matic during their World Cup Group D qualifying match at the Rajko Mitic Stadium in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, June 11, 2017. There is a World Cup to think about and I need to play.
Costa shocked reporters this week though when he openly claimed he hasn't had a good relationship with Conte all season.
Costa's goals were worth more points for Chelsea than any other player's in the Premier League last season but Romelu Lukaku and Alvaro Morata have been lined up for a long time to come in as his replacement.
The Spanish global has been crucial to the Blues' last two Premier League title victories. I have to wait for the club's decision.
It had been reported that the 18-year-old frontman was poised to knock back interest from both the Gunners and Real Madrid, but apparently the Blues believe they have what it takes to lure Europe's most talented teenager from Monaco.
"Being five months without playing?"
Costa, 28, could sign for Atletico and go on loan until the New Year - with AC Milan up for a short-term deal.
According to The Standard, via The Mirror, Atleti will look to enlist the help of billionaire shareholder Wang Jianlin, who could help engineer a move for the Chelsea striker to a club in the Chinese Super League.