SIMUNOVIC DILEMMA

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JOZO SIMUNOVIC’S international career is in limbo after FIFA declared he could not change his mind twice.

The Celtic centre-half rejected a call-up to Bosnia last week amid reports he now wants to represent Croatia, the nation of his birth, in this summer’s World Cup Finals in Russia.

Simunovic decided last year he would change nationalities from Croatia to Bosnia after being continually overlooked for the senior squad.

The former Dinamo Zagreb defender agreed to play for Bosnia, birthplace of his parents, after being approached by then-manager Mehmed Bazdarevic.

However, he has yet to make an appearance for them and informed new boss Robert Prosinecki he was no longer interested in playing for his adopted country.

That led to suggestions Croatia could call him up for Russia where they will play Argentina, Nigeria and Iceland.

However, the Bosnians contacted the world football’s governing body, who have informed them that Simunovic is only allowed one change of mind.

A Bosnian FA spokesman said: “FIFA have informed us about their Change of Association
Rule 8.1.

“It states that if a player has more than one nationality, or if a player seeks a new nationality, or if a player fulfills the conditions for playing for more national teams due to his nationality, he may, only once, request to change the association.

“Therefore, he is now only eligible to play for Bosnia because FIFA’s Status Committee granted him permission last year to play for us.”

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