There was little to show that Diego Costa was missed and plenty to suggest that Chelsea can still find the goals without their star player when the Blues visited the King Power Stadium on Saturday.
In fact, Marcos Alonso fired home within the first few exchanges to give the visitors the lead, and was at it again immediately after the interval, doubling the advantage albeit with a deflected finish.
Pedro summed up the victory with a neatly done header to put the result beyond reach for Claudio Ranieri’s side.
Although Antonio Conte revealed that Costa missed training and the eventual visit to the champions due to a slight back discomfort, uncertainty surrounds the future of the 28-year old amid talks of a big money move to the Chinese Super League.
As such, here are three reasons why the Spaniard should stay at Stamford Bridge.
Challenge for title
The services of the talismanic marksman may not have been missed against an under strength Leicester side, but his services in front of goal will be integral against the Premier League’s toughest going forward.
Costa has played a pivotal role in Chelsea’s title surge after what was- for lack of a better word [or just avoidance] – a shambolic 2015/16 season in which they finished tenth on the standings.
Although the Blues sit pretty at the helm of the Premier League standings with the advantage of a seven-point cushion over second placed Spurs, the continued absence of Costa may prove a monumental cost to Chelsea’s title aspirations, more so with Tottenham’s evident lack of weakness to be exploited by other teams.
Golden boot prospect
His notable absence during Chelsea’s 3-0 victory over the Foxes didn’t do any great harm to his quest for the golden boot, as the former Atletico forward is still the Premier League’s leading goal scorer, level on 14 goals with Alexis Sanchez and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Staying at Chelsea could increase his chances of adding yet another accolade to his personal collection.
The drama surrounding the big money move to China could alluringly lead to renewed contract talks, with only 18-months left to his current contact.
Should Costa opt to stay in England, he could receive an improved contract from the Chelsea hierarchy.
The striker was seen training alone on Monday at Cobham on his own volition while the rest of the team was on a two-day break.
Whether he chooses to leave or stay is left to be seen.
But we all know Diego Costa isn’t a sneaky cheat who would stab his teammates on the back and opt for a £30m a-year tax free deal.
Written by Brian Humphrey
Follow Brian on Twitter @brihum
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