By Chris Wright
The German Football Federation (DFB) have confirmed that their captain Michael Ballack will miss the World Cup as a result of the ankle injury he sustained in last weekend’s FA Cup final.
Ballack underwent an MRI scan in Munich this morning to assess the extent of the injury and the results showed there to be extensive ligament damage in his right ankle.
The German midfielder was left prostrate on the Wembley turf following a reckless challenge from Portsmouth’s Kevin-Prince Boateng and is now expected to be sidelined for a least two months.
A statement from the DFB issued this morning reads;
“National team captain Michael Ballack is out of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. This is the result of an MRI on Monday morning in Munich.
A tear of the medial collateral ligament of the right ankle was found. The right ankle is immobilised in a plaster. He will have to wear a special shoe for two weeks.
After the diagnosis of national team doctor Hans-Wilhelm Muller-Wohlfahrt today, a complete healing of the injury is expected. Ballack’s return to training is possible at the earliest in eight weeks.”
The injury has come as a massive blow for the 33-year-old Ballack who, realistically, was probably set to feature in what would have been his last World Cup with the German national team in South Africa this summer.