Chelsea striker Diego Costa is undoubtedly one of the best soccer players on the planet. He’s fast, strong, tough, and has a merciless instinct for goal. He’s also pretty scrappy. Did we say pretty scrappy? We meant very scrappy. And Costa makes no apologies for it:

“I don’t think I have done anything malicious … If I change in any way, I’m not going to be the same player. It doesn’t matter if defenders want to battle with me or not, I will just be trying to do my job as well as I possibly can.”

Things boiled over again on Saturday when, during Chelsea’s 2-0 over Arsenal, Costa invoked such a furious reaction from an Arsenal player that he eventually got sent off. Opponents said the incident solidified Costa’s status as soccer’s dirtiest player, which is probably a fair. May we present the evidence:

Exhibit A



Exhibit B

(Simon Stacpoole)


Exhibit C


(Getty Images)

Exhibit D

(REUTERS/Eddie Keogh)

(REUTERS/Eddie Keogh)

Exhibit E


Exhibit F

Exhibit G

Exhibit H

Exhibit I


Exhibit J


Exhibit K

Exhibit L

Exhibit M