striker Diego Costa is a love-hate figure but a player anyone would want in
their team, says Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino.
Costa leads the Premier League's scoring charts this season with 14 goals
ahead of Chelsea's trip to White Hart Lane on Wednesday, live on Sky Sports
1, but has often been criticised for his aggressive style of play.
The Spain international has helped fire Chelsea to a five-point lead at the
top of the table and Pochettino believes Costa's attitude has a big impact
on the rest of the Blues' players.
"Diego Costa is a player who you hate when you face him but you love when he
is your team-mate," Pochettino told AS.
"He is super competitive, with character and never likes to lose. He is
proud and that is what makes him to have that ability to improve every day.
"He transmits to his team-mates the culture of winning, of not being
satisfied, of always looking for more. He makes the rest better every day
and he is someone anyone would want to have in his team."
Tottenham currently sit fifth in the table on 39 points, 10 points behind
Chelsea, but have four more points than they did at this stage last season
when they were fourth in the league.
Victory for Chelsea at White Hart Lane would be their 14th in a row and set
a new Premier League record for consecutive wins in a single campaign, but
Pochettino sees the game as a chance to dent their rivals' title hopes.
"Chelsea arrive in very good shape (and) us too after the last few games,"
"It will be a very tough game and a great opportunity for us to try to stop
them and try to reduce the gap.
"It's important, I think it's important for us and for the Premier League to
try to win and try to stop them and reduce the gap."