Ballack on duty for Germany

Updated: 05 August 2009 14:37 IST

Michael Ballack will figure in next week's World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan despite being short of match fitness, coach Joachim Loew declared.

Berlin:

Germany captain Michael Ballack will figure in next week's World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan despite being short of match fitness, coach Joachim Loew declared on Wednesday.

Ballack was forced to fly home early from his club Chelsea's pre-season tour of the United States with a fractured toe, but is set to figure in the Community Shield clash with Manchester United on Sunday.

Loew told German news agency SID: "I have been in constant contact with him. He has resumed training with Chelsea and everything's going well. I'm working on the basis that he will be available."

Loew stressed Ballack's importance for the qualifier in Baku.

"He has considerable experience and brings his own qualities, he is without doubt a leader."

Germany take on Azerbaijan, coached by former Germany and Scotland boss Berti Vogts, as Group Four leaders, one point clear of Russia whom they face on October 10.

Topics : Football Bayern Munchen
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