Didier Drogba lauds new Chelsea teammate Diego Costa

Didier Drogba has backed £32 million striker Diego Costa to star in his first Premier League season at Chelsea.

Returning Chelsea hero Didier Drogba believes fellow summer addition Diego Costa will shine in the Premier League after his £32 million move from Atletico Madrid.

Coming off a stellar 2013-14 campaign, Costa netted 36 times in 56 games for the Spanish champions, making him one of Europe’s most coveted marksmen entering the off-season.

However, having failed to top 10 goals in his previous four La Liga seasons, and after a poor World Cup showing with Spain, some are concerned that the Brazilian-born striker could be a one-season wonder.

Drogba though has moved to quash those claims after seeing his new teammate in action on several occasions in the past, believing him to have both the talent and the character to succeed at the top level in England.

"I've been watching Diego play over the last few years and the first time I saw him I really liked him as a player," he told The Sun.

"I like his character, he's solid, he can score goals and he's also technically gifted. He likes people to respect him and that's important."

Returning to Chelsea on a one-year deal, after two seasons away from the club, Drogba added that the additions of Cesc Fabregas and Filipe Luis would help the club overcome the departures of veterans Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole, while also paying tribute to his former teammates.

"It was very important for us to buy these players, they are all good signings," he said. "To have Cesc with us, I think he'll understand it's better to be with us than against us.

"Ash was the best left-back in the world and I was lucky to have him in my team because when he was at Arsenal he was a difficult player to play against. He became a better player when he came to Chelsea.

"Everyone knows exactly what Frank meant to me. People say I scored a lot of goals but he was involved in almost all of them.

"The partnership with him was incredible and he's a legend at this club. I know he will also come back one day because he belongs to the Blues."

After scoring 157 goals in 341 appearances during his first eight-season stint at Chelsea, Drogba won’t be expected to produce to the same level this time around but, with Fernando Torres continuing to misfire in front of goal and Romelu Lukaku departing for Everton, the same can’t be said of Costa.

With the club looking to improve upon last season’s third-place Premier League finish, Jose Mourinho will certainly be relying on him for goals at Stamford Bridge in 2014-15, and the 25-year-old would be wise to get as much advice from the experienced Ivorian as possible ahead of his debut campaign in England football.

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch