SPORT
20/11/2013 11:07 GMT

Croatia Defender Josip Šimunić Defends 'Pro-Nazi' Celebratory Chant (VIDEO)

Croatia defender Josip Šimunić says he "did nothing wrong" by airing "pro-Nazi" chants after his country qualified for the World Cup.

A 2-0 victory over Iceland on Tuesday booked Croatia's ticket to Brazil next summer, but video footage shows Šimunić taking a microphone on to the field and bellowing: "For the homeland!" after the match.

Some fans responded: "Ready," which was the war call used by Ustaše, the Croatian pro-Nazi puppet regime that ruled the state during World War II when tens of thousands of people died in concentration camps.

josip simunic nazi

Šimunić was sent off by Graham Poll at the 2006 World Cup in Germany

Australian-born Šimunić defended his behaviour, saying: "Some people have to learn some history. I'm not afraid. I did nothing wrong. I'm supporting my Croatia, my homeland. If someone has something against it, that's their problem."

The same chant, coupled with the Nazi salute, has often been used by Croatian fans in the past. Fifa and Uefa have fined the Croatian Football Association because of such behaviour.