Queens Park Rangers on loan midfielder Niko Kranjčar is the latest player to withdraw from Croatia’s World Cup squad after an MRI scan on his injured leg revealed a ruptured hamstring muscle that will force him out of action for the next six weeks…
Kranjčar’s departure is a blow for coach Niko Kovač, who has already lost Joe Šimunić to suspension, and Ivan Strinić and Ivo Iličević to injury before the side has even boarded the plane for Brazil. Kranjčar arrived in Zagreb on Monday to have a MRI scan on his leg he injured during Saturday’s Premiership Play Off match against Derby County at Wembley.
“I am sad because it will mean he misses a big tournament. I needed Niko’s experience and good form he was in, but we must go on,” said coach Kovač after hearing the news on Monday.
Kovač will name his final squad of 23 after Croatia’s friendly with Mali in Osijek on Saturday.