Croatia have announced their squad that will travel to the European Soccer Championship next month.
In a surprise move Croatian boss Slaven Bilic has dropped veteran international strikers Mledan Petric and Ivan Klasnic from his squad. Both players have had poor seasons this year at their clubs and have suffered a harsh blow by being dropped from the national side.
Croatia’s first game is against the Republic of Ireland on 10 June and it will be a tough test for Giovanni Trapattoni. Bilic said: “Ireland are tough, well-organised and defend very well. They only surprise could be if Trapattoni made them more offensive. But that would only make us happier.”
Bilic who took over the Croatian national side in 2006 also confirmed that this will be his last tournament and will be stepping down as manager after it.
Croatia Euro 2012 preliminary squad:
Goalkeepers: D Subasic, I Kelava; G Blazevic,
Defenders: V Corluka, S Vrsaljko, D Lovren, J Simunic, I Strinic, G Schildenfeld, D Vida, J Buljat, D Pranjic
Midfielders: D Srna, O Vukojevic, I Rakitic, T Dujmovic, L Modric, M Badelj, N Kranjcar, I Perisic, I Ilicevic
Forwards: M Mandzukic, E Da Silva, N Jelavic, N Kalinic, I Olic