Diego Simeone backs Diego Costa for Ballon d'Or

Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone claims that Diego Costa should be a candidate for the Ballon d'Or next year.

Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone believes that Diego Costa should be a candidate for the Ballon d'Or next year.

The Spanish international has scored 34 times in all competitions this season, with that run of form helping Atletico into the semi-finals of the Champions League and top of the La Liga table.

While Simeone believes that his leading scorer can improve, the Argentine has backed the forward to be "among the candidates" for next year's Ballon d'Or.

"Costa has room for improvement. He's rebellious and I like that. Hopefully he doesn't stop growing," he told Onda Cero.

"It depends on what he wants to do. Today, he's among the candidates for the Ballon d'Or."

Costa is currently nursing an injured leg, but is expected to be fit for Friday's La Liga clash against Elche.

Head coach Diego Simeone of Atletico de Madrid congratulates goal-scorer Diego Costa during a La Liga match on October 27, 2013
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