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By ESPN Staff

Gold hits out at ''ridiculous'' Croatian claims

Birmingham chairman David Gold has dismissed a suggestion that Croatia playmaker Luka Modric may have been deliberately injured by Lee Bowyer as ''absolutely ridiculous''.

The president of the Croatian federation hit out earlier, claimed he was unsure whether Croatia's top stars are being deliberately targeted for rough treatment in the Premier League.

Markovic said: ''First Eduardo, now Luka Modric. This is horrible. I can only ask myself if it was really an accident.

But City chairman Gold told Five Live: ''It's quite unbelievable. I had to check it wasn't April 1, I thought it was a joke.

''To suggest a conspiracy is nonsense. To suggest it was a deliberate act by English players to weaken the Croatia squad is absolutely ridiculous.

''Maybe the problem is the statement by the Croatian official has completely been lost in translation?''

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