SLOVENIA NAME FINAL SQUAD

Slovenia coach Matjaz Kek has trimmed his World Cup squad to 23 on Tuesday by dropping three more players from his provisional roster.

Jan Koprivec, Aleksandar Rajcevic, Dare Vrsic and Miran Burgic were already cut from the original 30-man squad and now Mirnes Sisic, Darian Matic and Dejan Kelhar have also been told that they will miss out on this summer’s tournament.

Young attacker Tim Matavz is the biggest surprise in the final squad. The Groningen attacker has yet to make his first international appearance for Slovenia’s senior side.

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KOREN BACKS SLOVENIA

Slovenia captain Robert Koren has told ESPNsoccernet he is confident that Slovenia will prove they deserve their place on the world stage at this summer’s World Cup finals.

Many in the football world are sceptical about Slovenia’s ability to mix it with the big boys at the finals, but Koren, who has spent the last three years in England playing for West Brom, insists his team are ready to prove the doubters wrong.

“There are not many people who believed we could go to the world so it is a big, big achievement for us as such a small country,” Koren told Soccernet.

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SLOVENIA SMASH QATAR

Slovenia boosted its confidence ahead of the World Cup with a 4-1 victory over Qatar in a friendly on Wednesday.

Slovenia was aggressive from the start, with Milivoje Novakovic opening the scoring in the 13th minute and Bostjan Cesar adding a second in the 30th after collecting a pass from Andraz Kirm, who then made it 3-0 just four minutes later.

Brazilian-born player Fabio Montesin pulled a goal back for Qatar just before halftime but Bojan Jokic ended any hopes of a Qatar comeback with Slovenia’s fourth in the 67th minute.

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