Mario Mandzukic will miss Croatia’s first World Cup match thanks to a suspension earned in the qualification playoff against Iceland, but head coach Niko Kovac has attacking options at his disposal.
Real Madrid’s Luka Modric, Wolfsburg’s Ivica Olic and Sevilla’s Ivan Rakitic are on Kovac’s provisional roster, with Premier Leaguers Dejan Lovren (Southampton) and Nikica Jelavic (Hull City) representing the Premier League.
Still, Kovac is sounding a humble note. From the AP/USA Today:
“We’ll try our best in Brazil, but the earth won’t stop turning if we fail,” he said.
The full squad:
Goalkeepers: Stipe Pletikosa (Rostov), Danijel Subasic (Monaco), Oliver Zelenika (Lokomotiva)
Defenders: Igor Bubnjic (Udinese), Vedran Corluka (Lokomotiv), Dejan Lovren (Southampton), Danijel Pranjic (Panathinaikos), Gordon Schildenfeld (Panathinaikos), Darijo Srna (Shakhtar), Ivan Strinic (Dnipro), Domagoj Vida (Dynamo Kyiv), Sime Vrsaljko (Genoa)
Midfielders: Marcelo Brozovic (Dinamo), Milan Badelj (Hamburg), Mateo Kovacic (Inter), Niko Kranjcar (QPR), Ivan Mocinic (Rijeka), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Mario Pasalic (Hadjuk), Ivan Rakitic (Sevilla), Jorge Sammir Cruz Campos (Getafe), Ognjen Vukojevic (Dynamo Kyiv)
Strikers: Duje Cop (Dinamo), Eduardo (Shakhtar), Ivo Ilicevic (Hamburg), Nikica Jelavic (Hull City), Mario Mandzukic (Bayern Munich), Ivica Olic (Wolfsburg), Ivan Perisic (Wolfsburg), Ante Rebic (Fiorentina)