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Published: Thu, June 21, 2018
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Nikola Kalinic: Striker Sacked From Camp In Shame

Nikola Kalinic: Striker Sacked From Camp In Shame

Imagine getting to your first World Cup and then reneging on the chance to take part because of a supposed minor twinge (as speculated in the Croatian press) in your back.

The goals came from an own-goal by Oghenekaro Etebo and Real Madrid midfielder- Luka Modric, who converted from the penalty spot to seal all three points for Croatia.

Kalinic had started on the bench for the fourth successive worldwide match but was asked to enter the game by boss Zlatko Dalic with just five minutes to go. However, after he issued his statement he refused to answer questions regarding the departure of Kalinic.

The Croatia manager said Kalinic had claimed he was not fit to play when told to go on in Saturday's Group D match, which Croatia won 2-0.

"During the Nigeria match, Kalinic was warming-up and should have come in the second half", Dalic confirmed. Kalinic previously played for Hajduk Split, Pula, Sibenik, Blackburn Rovers, Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk and Fiorentina before joining Milan on loan in 2017. The same thing happened during a friendly match against Brazil in England, and also before training on Sunday.

After a rough season at AC Milan, with just six league goals in 31 Serie A appearances, Kalinic, at 30, is likely finished with the Vatreni.

"I accepted it calmly and, as I need players who are healthy and available, I made this decision".

Croatia face a hard game on Thursday against Argentina, before rounding off their group stages with a game against Iceland the following week.

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