November 7, 2013 / 3:23 PM / 4 years ago

Bosnia call up uncapped defender for Argentina friendly

SARAJEVO (Reuters) - Schalke player Sead Kolasinac will join Bosnia’s national team for their friendly against Argentina this month after FIFA approved the Germany-born defender to play for the Balkan country’s squad on Thursday.

Schalke 04's Sead Kolasinac reacts during the Champions League soccer match against Galatasaray in Gelsenkirchen March 12, 2013. REUTERS/Ina Fassbender

Bosnia qualified last month for their first major international tournament as an independent country after a 1-0 win over Lithuania sent them to next year’s World Cup.

Bosnia’s coach Safet Susic said his squad’s shaky defense would benefit in the long-run from the young defender but that he would not push him hard during the friendly in the United States on November 18

“It’s not the best option for a young player to have a debut against such a strong team,” Susic said.

Kolasinac will replace injured midfielder Senad Lulic for the game in St. Louis.

“I’ll give myself 100 percent in all national team matches, including against Argentina,” he told Bosnian state radio.

Susic has named an 18-man squad for the game in St. Louis.

“The result in this match is very important for us because we have never beaten such a major team,” Susic said. “Once we win the big teams, we will be able to consider ourselves as big as well.”

Reporting by Daria Sito-Sucic; Editing by Ed Osmond

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