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Happy birthday to Douglas Costa! Juve star hits the big 30 today

Douglas Costa, Juventus
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Today we celebrate the 30th birthday of Juventus winger Douglas Costa by taking a brief look back on the player’s career story.

Douglas Costa has been a prominent presence in European football for a decade now following his €8m switch from boyhood club Gremio to Shakhtar Donetsk in 2010.

While the left-footed Brazilian primarily plays on either the right or left flanks, he can also adopt central midfield roles. He doesn’t score as frequently as some of his peers, but makes up for it with an ample amount of assists.

Many have also noted Costa’s excellent technique and passing abilities, which were held in a high regard by none other than Pep Guardiola during their time together at Bayern Munich.

First steps in Europe

Born on September 14, 1990, in the Brazilian city of Sapucaia do Sul, Costa began his professional career by signing up for Gremio in 2008. He scored on his debut and soon established himself in the first-team.

The youngster’s impressive performances in his homeland soon caught the attention of European clubs, with Shakhtar signing him in January 2010. It didn’t take long either for Douglas to establish himself with the Ukrainian outfit.

He spent the following five and a half seasons at the Metalist Stadium, making 202 appearances in all competitions. Around 38 goals and 40 assists came his way on route to a remarkable haul of 12 major titles. Among them were five successive Ukrainian Premier League titles.

Costa’s strong outings in Ukraine won him a call-up to the Brazilian national team, with Dunga handing him his debut in a 4-0 friendly win over Turkey in November 2014. 

He kept his spot with the Selecao for the 2015 Copa America and the World Cup qualifiers while sealing a €30m transfer to Bayern Munich, making him the German club’s fourth most expensive signing at the time of his arrival.

A series of ups and downs

‘The Flash’ quickly made his mark in the Bavarian capital by setting up Arjen Robben’s goal in a DFL-Supercup clash with Wolfsburg. He was, in particular, stunning in the opening half of his debut campaign; registering 12 assists in his first 13 outings for Bayern.

In the end, Costa finished his debut campaign with seven goals and 18 assists in 43 appearances to his name. Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal titles came his way until Carlo Ancelotti replaced Guardiola in the summer of 2016.

The Italian coach preferred playing Franck Ribery down the right flank, leaving Costa to settle for a bit-part role. It led to a breakdown for the player’s relationship with the club, paving the way for Juventus to sign him on loan in 2017.

The former Shakhtar star was a man reborn in Turin after leaving his ugly ending at Munich in the past.

His 12 assists in the Serie A not only helped Juve to another title in 2017/18, but it was the second-best record overall. The Bianconeri, therefore, signed him permanently for €40m in the summer of 2018.

Injuries, though, have severely limited his opportunities in the last two seasons and left him out of the Brazil squad altogether. Questions, therefore, have been raised over his future

We can only hope Douglas Costa makes a steady recovery and once again proves his worth as a world-class talent in the upcoming season.

In the meantime, we wish him a very happy birthday and all the best for the future!