Geneva: World football body FIFA handed Croatian defender Josip Simunic a 10-game ban to make him miss the entire 2014 FIFA World Cup after he led fans into a pro-Nazi chant following the play-off win over Iceland last month.
The world soccer`s governing body confirmed on Monday that Simunic`s ban will start at the World Cup in Brazil, and that he will also be banned from entering the stadium for any of his country`s matches, reports Xinhua.
The 35-year-old Simunic shouted "for the homeland" after Croatia`s 2-0 win over Iceland to book their ticket for the World Cup finals in Brazil, Nov 19. In response, fans shouted "Ready." The chant was used by Croatia`s World War II Ustase regime, allied to Nazi Germany.
"After taking into account all of the circumstances of the case, and particularly given the gravity of the incident, the committee decided to suspend the player for 10 official matches," FIFA said in a statement.
Croatia coach Niko Kovac, a team mate of Simunic at the 2006 World Cup, said the Croatian football federation would appeal to FIFA
FIFA also fined Simunic $33,800 and ordered the Croatia football federation to pay a fine of $78,700.