Ballack misses Ivory Coast game

German Football
By German Football November 18, 2009 06:46

Ballack misses Ivory Coast game

German captain Michael Ballack is listed „out“ for Wednesday’s international match with the Ivory Coast (8.45 P.M., live on ARD). “He is unable to play on Wednesday, due to an irritation in the flexure”, said coach Joachim Löw on Monday. “Having consulted our medical staff, we have come to the conclusion that it is best to sit Ballack on Wednesday. He did not practice last week either. We like to be on the cautious side with our captain.”

The 33-year old did not participate in Monday’s team practice in the Düsseldorf arena. He is expected to return to practice within two to three days.

Forward Miroslav Klose is not with the team right now, as both his children have fallen ill to the swine flu.

Löw is yet undecided on his goalkeeper for the game on Wednesday, with Manuel Neuer (Schalke 04) and Tim Wiese (Werder Bremen) as his potential candidates. Meanwhile, Löw confirmed that Bayer Leverkusen’s forward Stefan Kiesling is part of the opening line-up. Six days after the tragic death of Robert Enke, the coach also talked about the difficult task to prepare his team for a football game: “I keep a close watch on the guys. We just need to return now to our regular rhythm. We like to show the fans a good game on Wednesday.”

The team intends to commemorate Robert Enke by wearing black ribbons and through a minute’s silence prior to kickoff. Löw: “We’ll have his jersey on the bench, and we’ll present some scenes on the videowall. He was an exceptional goalkeeper, and a very kind and exceptional man.”

German Football
By German Football November 18, 2009 06:46
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