Modric & Mandzukic in provisional Croatia World Cup squad

The Real Madrid midfielder and Bayern Munich striker headline Niko Kovac's roster for the tournament in Brazil, which also includes Nikica Jelavic, Dejan Lovren and Niko Kranjcar

Croatia head coach Niko Kovac has announced his provisional squad for this summer's World Cup, with Luka Modric and Mario Mandzukic as the star names, while also giving five uncapped players the chance to make their mark ahead of the World Cup.

The 42-year-old has named goalkeeper Oliver Zelenika, striker Duje Cop and midfielders Marcelo Brozovic, Ivan Mocinic and Mario Pasalic in his provisional 30-man squad for the finals.

Nikola Kalinic was left out to make room for Cop, who has scored 22 goals in 32 games for Dinamo Zagreb this season.

Kovac's squad also features Sevilla star Ivan Rakitic and the coach already has his final 23-man group in mind.

"I have in my head which 23 players who will go to Brazil, but we left some space," said Kovac. "Everyone has a chance to prove themselves.

"Mocinic had a superb season. When he was in the Under-21s he was a little restrained, but every day he is getting better

"It is similar with Pasalic and Brozovic and they will one day be the mainstays of the team.

"I personally explained why Leon Benko, Kalinic and Hrvoje Milic were not invited."

Defender Josip Simunic was unavailable for selection after his 10-match ban for "discriminatory behaviour" was upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Croatia face Brazil, Cameroon and Mexico in Group A of the World Cup.


Goalkeepers: Stipe Pletikosa (Rostov), Danijel Subasic (Monaco), Oliver Zelenika (Dinamo Zagreb).

Defenders: Darijo Srna (Shakhtar Donetsk), Dejan Lovren (Southampton), Vedran Corluka (Lokomotiv Moscow), Gordon Schildenfeld (Panathinaikos), Danijel Pranjic (Panathinaikos), Domagoj Vida (Dynamo Kiev), Sime Vrsaljko (Genoa).

Midfielders: Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Ivan Rakitic (Sevilla), Ognjen Vukojevic (Dynamo Kiev), Ivan Perisic (Wolfsburg), Mateo Kovacic (Inter Milan), Marcelo Brozovic (Dinamo Zagreb), Ivan Mocinic (Rijeka), Sammir (Getafe).

Forwards: Mario Mandzukic (Bayern Munich), Ivica Olic (Wolfsburg), Eduardo (Shakhtar Donetsk), Nikica Jelavic (Hull City), Ante Rebic (Fiorentina)