Heavy Blow to Croatia: No Rakitić Against Iceland?

Daniela Rogulj

The Croatian national football team, after winning the friendly match against Mexico last weekend, continues their qualification for the World Cup 2018.

On Monday morning, the Croatian national football team gathered in Sveti Martin na Muri to begin preparations for the European Qualifier for World Cup 2018. The match, which will be played against Iceland, is scheduled for June 11, 2017, in Reykjavik, reports Gol.hr on June 5, 2017.

At the national team gathering, coach Ante Čačić delivered some shocking news to the media that he would not be able to count on one of Croatia’s most important players – Ivan Rakitić. 

It turns out that Barcelona’s medical team has asked Čačić to exempt Rakitić from the match due to an inflamed abdominal wall.

”After the final match of Copa del Rey against Alaves, Barcelona’s doctor sent a request to exempt Rakitić of these representative actions. Rakitić played a lot this season and has been diagnosed with an acute inflammation of the lower abdominal wall and has been advised to rest. I spoke with Rakitić and we both agreed that he would skip the Iceland match,” Čačić told reporters. 

Čačić announced that he would not invite anyone subsequently because he has enough midfielders on his roster against Iceland. 

In addition to European champions Luka Modrić and Mateo Kovačić , Čačić can utilize Milan Badelj, Marcelo Brozović, Marko Rog, Franko Andrijašević, Filip Bradarić and Mario Pašalić. 

”We have six more training sessions so there is enough time to think and come up with the right option,” Čačić added.

The national team will train in Sveti Martin na Muri through Thursday before traveling to Reykjavik this weekend. 


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