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Modric starts on roady to recovery


Kovac sorry over Croatia supporters

Croatia coach Niko Kovac has apologised for the ugly scenes in the crowd that marred his side's 1-1 draw with Italy in Milan on Sunday.

The 2016 European qualifier at the San Siro was temporarily stopped in both halves by Dutch referee Bjorn Kuipers after visiting fans threw fireworks and smoke bombs onto the pitch.

I apologise to everyone, especially the Italians, for our supporters' behaviour.

I was disappointed and helpless, there are no right words for this. If someone has a problem, he has to deal with it outside the stadium.

This is not the real image of Croatia, Croatians are honest people that respect other nations, while this kind of behaviour leads nowhere. Of course, Croatia will face sanctions, but I think there is no reason for any point deductions.

– Niko Kovac


Simunic denies Nazi chanting

Croatia defender Josip Simunic has denied he meant to promote "any form of hatred" when he celebrated Croatia's progress to the World Cup finals with fans on Tuesday night.

Simunic faces the prospect of a FIFA investigation after he began chants - that reportedly have associations with Croatia's former pro-Nazi Ustashas regime - with his home fans following the 2-0 win over Iceland in Zagreb.

The thought that anyone could associate me with any form of hatred or violence terrifies me.

If anyone understood my cries differently, or negatively, I hereby want to deny they contained any political context.

They were guided exclusively by my love for my people and homeland, not hatred and destruction.

– Croatia defender Josip Simunic
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