Ballack out of opener

Germany have received a major setback prior to the World Cup opening match with captain Michael Ballack succumbing to a calf injury.

    Michael Ballack: Captain to become spectator

    The Chelsea-bound midfielder has been struggling to recover and coach Jurgen Klinsmann has decided to rest him in the interests of the longer term campaign.

    "It seems that Michael Ballack can not play against Costa Rica," Klinsmann told the waiting press.
      
    "He only trained for 30 minutes on Wednesday and then had to pull out.
      
    "We wanted Ballack on board as he is our captain and leader but it is important that he recovers."

    The Los Angeles-based Klinsmann will now decide on his replacement with it likely to come from the duo of Werder Bremen midfielder Tim Borowski or Borussia Dortmund's Sebastian Kehl, but he is hopeful of having his star player back for the second group match against Poland on June 14 in Hamburg.

    "We want him to get back to full fitness so that he can be fit  for the other games in the competition," he added.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Meet the deported nurse aiding asylum seekers at US-Mexico border

    Meet the deported nurse helping refugees at the border

    Francisco 'Panchito' Olachea drives a beat-up ambulance around Nogales, taking care of those trying to get to the US.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.