18 Jun 2011

Ballack calls farewell match against Brazil a "farce"

2:25 pm on 18 June 2011

Former Germany captain Michael Ballack has called an offer to end his international football career with a friendly game against Brazil in August a "farce", saying he was not treated with respect by Germany coach Joachim Loew.

Loew has ruled out using the 34-year-old Bayer Leverkusen midfielder again, saying a number of talented younger players were now more important to the team ahead of Euro 2012 in Poland and Ukraine.

The German football federation has offered Ballack, who was kept on as the team's official captain despite his injury, a 99th and last international appearance against the Brazilians in a friendly arranged long before Thursday's announcement.

Ballack, who has scored 42 goals in 98 internationals since making his debut in 1999, has not played for the national side since March last year after sustaining an ankle injury that forced him to miss last year's World Cup finals.

Germany finished third in that tournament in South Africa after fielding their youngest World Cup team in 76 years.