Hull City’s January signing Nikica Jelavic has stated his intentions to start the match against Brazil, which will be the opening of the World Cup 2014. Croatia will take on Brazil in this match. After getting regular football and helping Hull city to reach the final of the FA Cup, Jelavic has the form to be leading the national team in this match. Further, star striker Mario Mandzukic is suspended for the national team after his yellow card in the final World Cup qualifying matches. As a result, Jelavic is almost certain to start for Croatia in a match that will be highly important for their knockout stage qualification hopes.
Jelavic may not have scored much goals when he was at Everton, but his ability to lead the line has not been doubted since joining Hull. Croatia are expected to name Jelavic in the starting line-up for the final friendly match against Australia. They have not been in a good run of form during the recent pretournament friendly matches. After a 2-2 draw with Switzerland, they could only manage a narrow 2-1 win over Mali, who have not even qualified for the World Cup. Their final friendly against Australia will provide a lot of insight into their current form.
Jelavic was an ever present for Hull in the second half of the season. Even though he scored just four goals in the 16 league matches, it is understood that he will start the match since Croatia do not have much options upfront in the absence of Mandzukic. After the opening match against title favourites Brazil, Croatia will be coming up against Cameroon and Mexico. Ideally, they will be targeting something from the Brazil match in order to go into these two matches with a lot of confidence. Jelavic could be a great option to get a result.