Spain manager Vicente Del Bosque admits it may benefit Diego Costa if the striker stopped some of his controversial on-field antics.
Chelsea forward Costa has been the subject of much media attention since moving to the Premier League due to his combative style of play.
Last month Del Bosque dropped the 27-year-old, labelling his actions in the win over Arsenal “unedifying”, though he has returned to the Spain squad for the friendlies with England and Belgium.
“We all know his character, but we don’t feel we pick him because we owe him anything,” he said.
“He was picked because we believe in him, it is a question of confidence. Maybe he should smooth out his character and his behaviour but we believe in him.”
Much like Chelsea, Costa has endured a poor start to the season, scoring only three times in 15 appearances.
However Del Bosque insists the Blues poor form cannot be pinned on the former Atletico Madrid man.
“I think when a team isn’t playing well it’s not down to a single element and with Chelsea not playing well this season all of their elements are being affected by it,” he added.
Costa’s form in a Spain shirt has not been much better either.
He has scored only once in nine matches, but Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata has backed his domestic rival to rediscover his goalscoring touch.
“Right now we’re in the same team, Spain, and we want him to score goals,” Mata said.
“He’s not in the best moment right now as he’s not scoring as many as last season but I’m sure he’ll soon start to score for Chelsea and for us as he’s not forgotten how to.”
Should Costa adopt his style of play or is it what gives him a competitive edge? Have your say on our Chelsea forum.