In profile: Reported Liverpool target Diego Costa

Sports Mole takes a closer look at reported Liverpool transfer target Diego Costa.

Brendan Rodgers's transfer policy since he took charge of Liverpool last summer has been there for all to see. Kolo Toure aside, he wants young footballers whom he can mould into his style of play.

The recent arrivals of Luis Alberto and Iago Aspas highlight that point, with the latter in particular catching the eye during pre-season.

Rodgers was also keen on 24-year-old Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but the Armenian international eventually opted for Champions League finalists Borussia Dortmund.

It means that for the last few weeks, the Liverpool boss has had around £22m burning a hole in his pocket. Those funds may soon be in Atletico Madrid's bank account, though, with the Reds believed to be extremely interested in their striker Diego Costa.

Diego Costa keeps control of the ball against Sevilla.© Getty Images

As yet, there is no indication as to whether or not Costa is keen on the move, but what would the Merseysiders be getting for their hefty investment?

Born in Brazil, the frontman started his career with Braga before joining Atletico in 2007. He failed to establish himself at the Vicente Calderon, though, and after a loan spell with his former club, as well as with Celta Vigo and Albacete, he was transferred to Real Valladolid.

His performances for the Castille and Leon-based outfit during the 2009-10 campaign caught the attention of Atletico, who exercised the buy-back clause that they had negotiated during his sale.

Another loan move, this time with Rayo Vallecano, followed where he would score nine times from 16 outings. It was that form that prompted Atletico coach Diego Simeone to give him a chance in the red and white stripes last term.

Atletico Madrid's Diego Costa celebrates a goal against Osasuna on March 17, 2013© AP Photos

He rewarded the faith that was shown in him by scoring 10 goals in La Liga and 20 in all competitions. While it was a campaign that enhanced the fact that he would never be a prolific scorer of goals, it showed that the 24-year-old is an ideal striking partner.

Playing alongside Radamel Falcao, Costa was happy to be involved in the physical side of the game, which in turn freed up his more clinical teammate. The Colombian international scored 34 times last season and there is a case that without Costa's presence, he may have found opportunities harder to come by.

If - and it is a big if - Liverpool can convince Luis Suarez that his future remains at Anfield, the Uruguayan could potentially benefit from Costa's arrival.

Diego Costa celebrates his goal in the Copa del Rey final against Real Madrid.© Getty Images

That's not to say that Costa does not contribute when it comes to finding the net himself, and big goals to boot. He hit eight as Atletico won the Copa del Rey earlier this year, including a goal in the semi-final against Sevilla and another strike in the final against city rivals Real Madrid.

He may not be the most technically gifted footballer to have ever graced the game, but his brute force makes him more than a handful for opposition defenders. There has also been improvement in his movement off the ball.

The two-time Brazil international can be a little hot-headed, as 59 yellow cards and seven reds from his time in Spain show. It means that there are doubts over his temperament, but his effectiveness cannot be questioned.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers on the touchline on December 1, 2012
Read Next:
Rodgers: 'There's money for more signings'
You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole

1Manchester CityMan City65102121916
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd65101721516
4Tottenham HotspurSpurs6321105511
7Huddersfield TownHuddersfield62315329
9Newcastle UnitedNewcastle63036519
10West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom52214408
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton621357-27
15Swansea CitySwansea612337-45
16Stoke CityStoke6123510-55
17Leicester CityLeicester6114912-34
18West Ham UnitedWest Ham6114613-74
20Crystal Palace6006013-130