30 Jan 2011

Ballack makes first start in four months

7:13 am on 30 January 2011

Bayer Leverkusen, with Germany football captain Michael Ballack making his first start since September, beat Hanover 96 2-0 to tighten their hold on second place in the Bundesliga.

The 34-year-old midfielder had been out of action since injuring his shinbone in September.

Leverkusen have 39 points from 20 games, five ahead of Hanover who are third.

Leaders Borussia Dortmund, on 47, travel to VfL Wolfsburg tomorrow while fourth-placed Bayern Munich take on Werder Bremen.