January 6, 2017

Jones Hails 'Big Mongrel' Costa  (Sky Sports)

Diego CostaEngland rugby union boss Eddie Jones has revealed he is an admirer of "big mongrel" Diego Costa.

The Chelsea striker, who has an infamously stroppy and snarling demeanour on the pitch, has been firing in the goals to help propel the Blues to the top of the Premier League table this season.

The term 'mongrel' has a specific connotation to Australians in a sporting context - it is an aggressive and determined quality which is much admired and sought-after Down Under.

And Jones, whose England team won all their matches in his first year in charge, picked out Costa and his Chelsea team-mate Cesc Fabregas as two footballers he is enjoying watching.

"I love Diego Costa, he's a big mongrel," he told The Sun. "Hard and skilful, he's a bit like [England No 8] Billy Vunipola.

"I like the little guy Cesc Fabregas too - he's got great vision and reminds me of [England fly-half] George Ford.

"I just love all the sport here, I love the Premier League. I love the drama, the twists and turns, the interaction between managers. It's great to watch."

Jones spent time observing Pep Guardiola when the Manchester City boss was at Bayern Munich and the Australian is a huge admirer of his coaching ability.

One footballing crossover he is yet to make - so far at least - is copying the infamous 'hairdryer treatment' of former Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

And Jones says he doubts that modern players would respond as positively as those in Fergie's era.

Jones said: "I haven't had to use the hairdryer - yet. But it's still in my back pocket and I can get it out if I need to.

"You don't use it as much now. In the old days you could come in and get people to respond to it. Young kids don't respond to it any more, they just turn off. You have to engage them emotionally now. Their whole life is different."

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