Handball superstar Nikola Karabatic could surprisingly compete in the World Cup in Germany and Denmark. The 34-year-old has resumed training with the reserve of his club Paris Saint-Germain after his injury, said France coach Didier Dinart, according to a message on the association's website. Karabatic also confirmed that he would join the team.
Tellement heureux et fier de rejoindre le groupe en tant que 18me et participer à l aventure ♂️ #BleuEtFier #heretocreate # GERDEN2019 @FRAHandball pic.twitter.com/Wv0N2z9gHL- NIKOLA KARABATIC (@NKARABATIC) January 12, 2019
The conditions are met, so that Karabatic joins the team. "He's an important player, of course, but at this stage we need to check in the training sessions how he can fit into the team," Dinart said. Karabatic is already on Saturday to join the team in Berlin.
The threefold World Handballer had been operated on in October on foot and should then fail for four to six months, as his club had communicated at that time. Despite the injury he was appointed to the extended squad of the defending champion for the World Cup.
Should the threefold World Handballer actually play at the World Cup, another player would have to leave the French squad. Karabatic could then also in the preliminary round match against hosts Germany on Tuesday (20:30 clock, live ticker SPIEGEL ONLINE; TV: ZDF) are used. Without him, France had to laboriously win against Brazil 24:22 to the tournament opener.
Karabatic has been instrumental in shaping the great era of French handball players over the past 16 years. He missed since his first international match in October 2002, not a big tournament, took twice with the Equipe Tricolore Olympic gold (2008 and 2012), was four times between 2006 and 2018 World and three times European champion.