Nikola Kalinic is expected to be sent home from Croatia’s World Cup squad after a row with the team’s head coach.
Kalinic was named in Zlatko Dalic’s 23-man squad for this summer’s tournament in Russia, and was on the bench as they started their campaign with a 2-0 win over Nigeria.
The striker was set to come on as a second-half substitute but refused to do so, claiming he had an issue with his back.
Ronan Murphy, a journalist for Goal.com, says that Croatia have called a press conference for later this afternoon, at which it is expected that Dalic will announce Kalinic’s departure.
24sata add that Dalic told reporters after the game that Croatia finished the match with no injuries, but “with a problem”.
His exit will leave Croatia with just one natural No.9 in their squad in the form of Mario Manduzkic.
Kalinic, who scored six goals in 41 games for AC Milan this season, has not started any of Croatia’s last four games.
Croatia head coach Zlatko Dalic is expected to send Milan forward Nikola Kalinic home from the #WorldCup today. Kalinic was unhappy in the squad and refused to come on as a sub vs Nigeria, claiming he had a back problem. Croatian pess conference at 16:15 CET. #CRO
— Ronan Murphy (@swearimnotpaul) June 18, 2018