Michael Ballack

Chelsea start to pay the price for summer of cost-cutting

One defeat does not constitute a crisis at Chelsea these days, not even an emphatic 3-0 beating by Sunderland at Stamford Bridge. However the manner of the defeat, the way the Double winners were so comprehensively outplayed, hints at deep-seated problems within the club that cannot be fixed with double sessions on the training ground.

Schweinsteiger tipped for move abroad

Germany captain Michael Ballack claims Bastian Schweinsteiger is ready to follow the examples of Sami Khedira and Mesut Ozil by moving abroad next summer.

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Ballack: I will be German captain again, no matter what Lahm says

Michael Ballack has warned Bayern Munich defender Philipp Lahm he fully intends to captain Germany in the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign. The 33-year-old, who joined former club Bayer Leverkusen on a free transfer in the summer, was ruled out of the World Cup by an ankle injury suffered on his last appearance for Chelsea, in the FA Cup final at Wembley in May.

Low defends Lahm captaincy claims

Germany coach Joachim Low has defended his captain Philipp Lahm ahead of their World Cup semi-final encounter against Spain in Durban later today.

Schweinsteiger insists Spain are favourites

Bastian Schweinsteiger insists Spain are the favourites for tomorrow's World Cup semi-final encounter in Durban, despite Germany being the most impressive team in South Africa so far.