Ballack recovers from latest injury setback

AFP, Friday 18 Feb 2011

Injury-plagued former Germany captain Michael Ballack may return to action for Bayer Leverkusen on Sunday after recovering from the latest in a long line of setbacks

Michael Ballack

The 34-year-old midfielder underwent an MRI scan on a knee problem last weekend but came through a full training session for his club on Friday unscathed.

Leverkusen coach Jupp Heynckes reported: "Friday's training went really well and he'll be included in the squad (for Sunday's game against Stuttgart) barring any last minute problem."

Last Saturday the former Chelsea star was an unused substitute in his side's 3-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.

Ballack has battled with his fitness since an ankle injury last May ruled him out of the World Cup. He then fractured his leg on only his third game back last September.

He returned to Bundesliga action in January but lasted only three games.

His international career remains in doubt after he was left out of Germany coach Joachim Loew side's that drew 1-1 with Italy in this month's friendly.

Loew has hinted that Ballack may have won the last of his 98 caps for Germany, saying that Sami Khedira and Bastian Schweinsteiger were his first-choice midfielders.

Short link: