AC Milan striker Nikola Kalinic rejects World Cup medal

Image PA

Image PA

Croatia striker Nikola Kalinic has confirmed that he turned down a World Cup finalist medal after playing no part in his country's fantastic campaign in Russian Federation.

The AC Milan forward now says he does not deserve to be honoured with the medal because he did not play in Russian Federation.

Speaking to reporters, Kalinic acknowledged that he played no part of Croatia's historic World Cup run and therefore refused the chance of owning a World Cup finalists medal.

They won their group over Argentina and beat Denmark, hosts Russian Federation and England in the knockout stages on the way to their first final. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

"Thanks for the medal, but I did not play in Russia", Kalinic told Sportske Novosti.

The Milan striker refused to come on as a substitute in Croatia's 2-0 win over Nigeria, citing fitness issues, but was then kicked out of the squad by head coach Zlatko Dalic.

Croatia's Nikola Kalinic in AC Milan colours.

The Blazers boss Dalic was bitter with the attitude put out by the former Blackburn player, having encountered a similar incident with Kalinic against Brazil in a pre-World Cup game.

In the absence of the 30-year-old forward, Croatia were left with just one designated striker, Mario Mandzukic, who rose to the occasion, scoring three goals in six appearances, including one goal in the final as well.

After emerging Group D winners, they defeated Denmark and Russian Federation from penalty shoot-out.

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