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Hazard shines but Blues stumble

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By ESPN Staff

Voller backs Ballack over fitness

Bayer Leverkusen general manager Rudi Voller claims Michael Ballack is ready to show Germany coach Joachim Low he was wrong to curtail the midfielder's international career.

The German Football Association (DFB) announced the last month that Ballack would no longer be considered for international duty.

"As far as we at Leverkusen are concerned, the issue of the DFB and Ballack is through,'' Voller said in an interview with Bild. "Everything has been said. What is now important is that Michael works for us. But you can see clearly, Ballack is in a different condition than he was after his bad injuries. He is much fitter.

"You can clearly feel that he wants to show that to everyone. We will still get a lot of joy out of him.''

The former Chelsea midfielder won 98 caps for his country, but last played for Low's side before last summer's World Cup, a tournament he missed with an ankle injury and which saw the emergence of several exciting young players.

Voller also insists there is no rush to agree a new deal with goalkeeper Rene Adler.

"We are in contact with Rene Adler and also his agent,'' Voller said. "We have now agreed that Rene will give us a sign. There is no time-pressure or a set deadline in this matter.''

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