Bosnia and Herzegovina have arrived in St. Louis, the host city of their first friendly in preparation for the World Cup. The Dragons will play Ivory Coast on Friday (7:30 local time), before moving to Chicago to meet Mexico.
However, the American tour for Bosnia began with troubles. The plane that took players over the Atlantic Ocean could not land in Chicago because of the bad weather, so it landed in Indianapolis. After refueling, the team flew back to Chicago, then to St. Louis.
Twenty-four hours on the road forced mananger Safet Susic to postpone some of his training sessions and leave more time to rest for his players.
Ervin Zukanovic escaped all the fuss in the air—he did not board the plane that left Sarajevo Airport. The defender, who has been capped six times for Bosnia and Herzegovina, was denied an entry visa by the Embassy of United States in Sarajevo and still awaits the green light from authorities.
Susic probably wanted to test Zukanovic in a pair with Emir Spahic, since the first-choice centre-back Ermin Bicakcic is still injured and will probably miss both matches on USA tour. A couple of minor injuries could easily affect the lineup of the team for the Ivory Coast match, but the main question is whether Susic is ready to reveal his hand at this point in preparations.
His main dilemma is the system: Bosnia will obviously adjust to Argentina in the group stage and play with one striker, but maybe Susic will keep his ideas away from the pitch until the World Cup kicks off.
Bleacher Report brings you a prediction of Bosnia and Herzegovina's starting XI in the Ivory Coast match.
All quotes obtained firsthand unless otherwise stated.