Chelsea ace Pedro believes the impending departure of goal-scoring colossus Diego Costa will leave the Blues weaker and be a “big loss”.

Atletico Madrid have agreed a deal to sign Costa, according to reports in Spain, following the striker’s bid to quit Stamford Bridge; a move that has seen him stay away from the club after apparently falling out with boss Antonio Conte.

The spat came about after Costa was told he was no longer part of Conte’s plans at Chelsea. Since then he has refused to return and even stated he has been feels as if he is being treated like a “criminal”.

Now Atletico have seemingly had an offer of £53million accepted by the Premier League champions and Costa will make the move back to Atletico when the transfer window opens in January.

Diego Simone’s side can’t sign players until then after a sanction from FIFA but will land Costa, who his 52 goals in three seasons and helped deliver two top flight crowns, subject to a medical.

And although he won’t be able to actually play, the net-buster will train with his new team-mates and no doubt be in prime condition for when they unleash him on La Liga opponents in the New Year.

Speaking on the prospect of losing Costa in the summer, Pedro said: “If eventually it is confirmed that he will not continue with us, it will be a very big loss for us.

“We will see what happens to Diego but we don’t know. He is obviously a very important player in attack for us. He has scored the majority of the goals for us this season.

“He is a player feared by defenders because he is fast. He scores with ease. Diego gives you an added strength and more so in this league, because he is strong, he scores and he has good physical condition.”