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Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 August 2005, 10:16 GMT 11:16 UK
Prso insists on Croatia blessing
Rangers striker Dado Prso
Dado Prso says flying makes his problem knee swell
Rangers striker Dado Prso still believes Croatia coach Zlatko Kranjcar has given him his blessing not to turn up for the friendly against Brazil.

Kranjcar has been quoted as saying that he expects Prso, who complains that excessive travelling risks damaging an old injury, to be present in Split.

But Prso said: "I spoke with the national coach and there's no problem.

"I also spoke with the president of the football federation and he was okay with my decision."

Prso underwent a knee operation three and a half years ago and says he was warned that the repair might only last four years.

The 30-year-old says that air travel causes his knee joints to swell.
I expect Prso to be in Split on Wednesday
Croatia coach Zlatko Kranjcar

"I love playing for my country and I always give my all in games," he said.

"I will not say I am going to play then go out and give less than 100%.

"It was not easy for me to tell the coach I would not be going to Split to play against Brazil, but I did not make the decision only because we play Celtic at the weekend. It's about my health.

"I want to play for my national team in the important World Cup qualifying games and to help them get to the finals.

"But I want to play lots of important games for Rangers as well. And if not playing friendlies helps keep me fit and fresh then it helps me, it helps the national team and it helps Rangers.

"Croatia understand I am not a young player and the travelling can cause problems.

"At the moment, it is just for the Brazil game. But I think that, for me, friendly games are over.

"If I want to finish my career at Rangers, it is best not go to play international friendlies."

But Kranjcar said: "If Rangers is Dado's priority, I will have to think about the possibility of not inviting him for any future matches.

"Prso has to decide if he can fulfil his obligations for the national team.

"I know Rangers have two tough matches coming up against Celtic and Anorthosis, but I want the Scots to respect the Croatia national team as they respect their own.

"I expect Prso to be in Split on Wednesday. It is not important that he plays, but he has to be here.

"We did not invite him for recent friendly matches against Austria and Israel and he deserved that because of his play.

"But, as far as I'm concerned, he has to be in Split on Wednesday."

Meanwhile, Anorthosis captain Nikos Nikolaou's participation in next week's tie is in doubt as the midfielder lost four family members in the Greece air disaster.

He withdrew from this week's World Cup qualifier against the Faroe Islands.


SEE ALSO
Rangers happy to get Prso break
15 Aug 05 |  Rangers
Prso reveals knee injury concern
03 Aug 05 |  Rangers


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