Croatia manager Zlatko Dalic has revealed that Glasgow Rangers left-back Borna Barisic has been struggling with injury while on international duty.
The Lowdown: Barisic away with Croatia
Barisic was selected by Dalic to be a part of the Croatia squad for Euro 2020, and the Balkan nation kicked off their campaign against England at Wembley on Sunday.
The Gers’ £5.4m-valued 28-year-old (Transfermarkt) had been expected to start the match, which Croatia lost 1-0, but he was left out of the matchday squad.
The Latest: Dalic reveals Barisic injury
Prior to the clash at Wembley, Dalic explained Barisic’s absence. He said (via The Scotsman):
“I think this is the best possible option for this match.
“Gvardiol has come in at left-back as Barišić has had some problems in the last ten days.”
The Verdict: Blow to Croatia
Coming into the tournament, Barisic was Dalic’s clear number-one choice on the left side of the back four. He appeared in both of his country’s warm-up games against Armenia and Belgium, while he has just enjoyed arguably the best season of his career with the Gers.
Will Barisic recover before the end of the tournament?
In the end, though, Dalic was forced to play Gvardiol in his place. While the 19-year-old will be joining up with RB Leipzig next term, this was just his second cap and also his first-ever start for his country (Transfermarkt) – a Euro 2020 opener is not the best time to throw him into the deep end. The boss will be hoping Barisic will be able to feature as the tournament progresses, as will Rangers fans, who’ll be keen to see their man do well on the big stage. However, those fans might also be worried that the defender could play through an injury, which is never ideal as it could lead to further complications.
In other news, Rangers fans were livid at this SPFL development.
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