Transfer news: Atletico Madrid refuse to sell Diego Costa despite £21m Liverpool bid

The Reds thought their offer would trigger a release clause in the striker's contract

Atletico Madrid have reaffirmed their commitment to keeping hold of Diego Costa despite interest from Liverpool.

Brendan Rodgers' side made a £21.8m bid for the Brazilian forward last week, but the Madrid club insisted he was not for sale.

Now Atletico's sporting director Jose Luis Caminero has reiterated the club's stance on the 24-year-old, who scored 20 goals in all competitions last season.

Speaking to AS, Caminero said: "Diego Costa is a very important player for Atletico, we value him very highly and we are convinced that this year he is going to score a lot of goals with Atletico. He is an idol for the fans."

Pressed on whether Costa would stay at he club, he added: "Yes, he's going to continue."

Caminero's comments follow Costa's own declarations that he was intent on remaining at Atletico, who finished last season in third place in La Liga. The club qualified automatically for the Champions League, and won the Copa del Rey, with Costa scoring in the final against rivals Real Madrid.

Speaking to AS at Madrid Barajas airport as the team returned from their pre-season tour of South America, Costa said: "As I've been in Argentina and Uruguay I've not heard anything about this.

"I'm happy here, if the club want me to be here, I'm going to be here.

"I think that the coach (Diego Simeone) counts on all of us, not just me. He knows how important it is to maintain the squad, the fans know it as well."

The club are reluctant to lose Costa after Radamal Falcao, their top scorer last term with 28 league goals, joined Monaco at the start of the summer.

Spain's all-time top scorer David Villa was signed as the Colombian's replacement, while 20-year-old forward Leo Baptistao has joined from Rayo Vallecano.

Baptistao scored a double in Atleti's win over Uruguayan club Nacional in their last game of their tour, but Villa did not travel with the squad due to his participation in the Confederations Cup with Spain.

Caminero explained that 'El Guaje' would need time to return to full fitness and adapt to his new club, but was certain he would be a success.

"He finished the season later than everyone else and he needs a different plan of preparation. As soon as we return to training he will join up and be part of the squad," he said.

"He will have ideal forward partners like Adrian or Diego Costa. We don't need to remind ourselves how good a player Villa is, at international and at club level. I'm sure that his goals will take Atletico as far as possible and we can assure everyone that he has the utmost enthusiasm about the coming season."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Alan Bennett criticised the lack of fairness in British society encapsulated by the private school system
peopleBut he does like Stewart Lee
Sport
John Terry, Frank Lampard
footballChelsea captain sends signed shirt to fan whose mum had died
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Rita Ora will replace Kylie Minogue as a judge on The Voice 2015
tv
Life and Style
tech
Life and Style
Alan Turing, who was convicted of gross indecency in 1952, was granted a royal pardon last year
life
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Life and Style
life
Arts and Entertainment
Tennis player Andy Murray's mum Judy has been paired with Anton du Beke for Strictly Come Dancing. 'I'm absolutely delighted,' she said.
tvJudy Murray 'struggling' to let Anton Du Beke take control on Strictly
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits