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Last month, defender Josip Šimunić celebrated Croatia's World Cup qualification by leading fans in a call-and-response chant made famous by the nation's fascist puppet regime that ruled during World War II. FIFA has now banned him for 10 matches, which will extend through the World Cup.

FIFA's statement:

"The committee took note that the player, together with the crowd, shouted a Croatian salute that was used during World War II by the fascist 'Ustase' movement. As a consequence, the committee agreed that this salute was discriminatory and offended the dignity of a group of persons concerning, inter alia, race, religion or origin, in a clear breach of article 58 par. 1a) of the FIFA disciplinary code.

"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."


Šimunić was also fined the equivalent of nearly $34,000, and at age 35, this could spell the end of his international career. Below our original story on Šimunić.

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