It is a tackle that has hit headlines around the world, with even the British tabloids saying that Joe Simunic’s tackle on Serbia’s Miralem Sulejmani during Friday night’s World Cup qualifier in Belgrade could possibly be the worst foul committed in football. Serbia’s local press were just as harsh, appealing for FIFA to take action against the experienced Australian-born defender and ban him from football.
“Personally I have not seen them (headlines), but a lot of people who know me have called me on Monday and told me how shocked they are with what the press there are writing, and what our press (in Croatia) has unfortunately quickly reported again,” said Joe, before continuing.
“I made a technical foul which I was sent off for and I do not see anything wrong with that, nothing that requires anymore to be said about it. I think any professional in the world would commit a foul to save his side,” Simunic said.
Crazy Joe, as he is affectionately know, said he was not even sure who he actually had tackled until after the match.
“When I went to the changing rooms I didn’t even know who I fouled, and when I found out it was Sulejmani I was sorry because he is a good guy and I am glad he was not injured. I told him that immediately after the match,” said the veteran of over 100 international caps for Croatia.
“If someone is interested how I am as a person then they can ask my friends, they can even ask those who don’t like me. I am sure that they will have to try very hard to find someone who I have done something bad to in life,” concluded Simunic.