Nigeria To Battle Modric, Rakitic, Mandzukic

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Nigerian soccer fans on Monday received a confirmation that their national team, Super Eagles will come up against the trio of Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic at this year’s World Cup, after they were all named to Croatia’s squad.

Speculation had always been rife that Real Madrid battling midfielder, Modric as well as Rakitic from Barcelona and Mandzukic from Juventus would be threats to Nigeria’s hopes of winning the first group match against Croatia on June 16, but the worry became more palpable after Croatia announced their provisional list at the start of the week.

This came as Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic namedhis 32-man provisional squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup through the official Twitter handle of the country’s football federation.

The Croatian will face Nigeria, Iceland and Argentina in the group stage of the Russia 2018 World Cup.

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Dalic named four goalkeepers, 12 defenders, eight midfielders and eight forwards to compete for places in the final 23-man squad for the Mundial.

Also included in the squad are Mateo Kovacic from Real Madrid, Ivan Rakitic from Barcelona and Sime Vrsalijko from Atletico Madrid.

Also called up are the likes of Ivan Perisic, Nikola Kalinic, Marko Rog, Milan Badelj, Ivan Strinic from the Italian Serie A.

Croatia will face Nigeria in their opening Group D game before battling Argentina and Iceland.

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