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Chelsea allow Diego Costa to stay away amid talks over Atlético Madrid return

• Chelsea give forward permission to miss start of pre-season training
• Crystal Palace close to signing Chelsea’s Ruben Loftus-Cheek on loan

Diego Costa is not expected at Chelsea’s Cobham training base this week having been given permission to miss the first team’s return for pre-season training while negotiations continue with Atlético Madrid aimed at securing his permanent departure.

The Premier League champions reported back to work on Monday morning, 24 hours after Antonio Conte returned. It was made clear to Costa by the manager last month that he is not in the Italian’s plans for the new campaign, with the Spain forward having since indicated he will only countenance re-signing for Atlético.

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