(born September 26, 1976 in Görlitz, Saxony) is a
German footballer. A midfielder, he is the current captain of the German
national team, and plays club football for Chelsea in the English Premier
His parents sent him to train with the side when he was seven years old.
He later moved on to FC Karl-Marx-Stadt (renamed Chemnitzer FC in 1990). His
father had played second-division football himself in Germany. Unusual for
his early age was Ballack's ability to use both feet with equal authority.
In 1995, Ballack earned his first professional contract, thanks to his
impressive performances in the role of central midfielder. He was dubbed the
"Little Kaiser," in reference to Franz Beckenbauer, who was nicknamed
"The Kaiser." His professional debut came on August 4, 1995, on the
first day of the new 2. Bundesliga season. Chemnitz lost the game 2-1,
against VfB Leipzig.
Michael Ballack <<Video
Click on pics to see more
At the end of the season, during which Ballack made fifteen appearances,
Chemnitz were relegated to the multi-tiered, regional third division. For
Ballack himself, however, that season held one great success: on March 26,
1996, he made his debut for Germany's Under-21 side.
The following season, Ballack became a regular first-team player as
Chemnitz missed out on an immediate return to the Bundesliga. He did not
miss a game and scored ten goals for the "Sky Blues". It was not enough for
Chemnitz to go up, but Ballack managed to win his own, personal promotion:
in the summer of 1997, decorated German coach Otto Rehhagel of just-promoted
1. FC Kaiserslautern, signed Ballack at their return to top flight football.
It was during the seventh game of the 1997–98 season, away to Karlsruher
SC, that Rehhagel decided to throw Ballack into the Bundesliga for the first
time, if only for the final five minutes of the encounter. On March 28,
1998, Ballack made his first-team debut against Bayer Leverkusen.
Ballack made sixteen appearances for his new team during the season as
the club became the first-ever newly promoted team to lift the league title.
In the following season, Ballack became both a regular (he made 30
appearances, scoring four goals) and one of the side's leading players.
Kaiserslautern reached the quarter finals of the Champions League, but were
knocked out by Bayern Munich.
On July 1, 1999, Ballack moved to Bayer Leverkusen at the age of 22, for
a transfer fee of €4.1 million.
It was at Bayer Leverkusen that Ballack made his big breakthrough.
Coaches Christoph Daum and Klaus Toppmöller granted him an attacking role in
the midfield. Ballack was instrumental to the success of Leverkusen, scoring
27 goals in the league and 9 in Europe over the course of his three seasons
at the BayArena.
2002 was a season of disappointment for Bayer Leverkusen. In the German
Bundesliga, the team surrendered a five point lead at the top of the table
over the last three games of the season to finish second behind Borussia
Dortmund, lost the Champions League final 2-1 to Real Madrid, and lost the
German Cup final 4-2 to Schalke 04. These three runner-up finishes were
dubbed 'Treble Horror'.
Ballack and Leverkusen teammates Bernd Schneider, Carsten Ramelow, and
Oliver Neuville were even beaten finalists with Germany in the 2002 World
Cup, although Ballack was suspended for the final itself. Ballack finished
with 17 league goals, and his remarkable season led to him being voted into
the uefa.com users' Team of 2002 as well being named German Footballer of
In spite of Spanish giants Real Madrid's interest, Ballack decided to
sign with Bayern Munich in a €12.9 million deal in 2002 after his impressive
performances in the World Cup. Bayern won the Bundesliga in his first season
with 75 points, they also won the German Cup. In his second season however,
Bayern lost their Bundesliga crown to Werder Bremen along with the cup.
In his third season with the Bavarian giants, Ballack enjoyed success in
the 2004-05 season as Bayern Munich completed another double. New coach
Felix Magath stated he was the only automatic starter in their midfield.
In four seasons at Bayern, Ballack won three Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal
doubles and scored 47 goals in 135 matches. Between 1998 and 2005, Ballack
notched up 61 goals in his domestic league.
However, Ballack's critics noted his frequent choking in important
Champions League matches. This resulted in open public criticism from club
general manager Uli Hoeneß, communications director Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
and club president Franz Beckenbauer (all former Bayern players).
Beckenbauer later went as far as to accuse Ballack of "saving his strength"
for prospective employers after Ballack turned in an average performance in
the 2006 DFB Cup final against Eintracht Frankfurt.
Ballack agreed to join Chelsea on a free transfer on May 15, 2006.
During his last season as a Bayern player there were rumours of interest
from Manchester United, Real Madrid and A.C. Milan,
but Ballack instead chose to go to Stamford Bridge. Shortly after arriving
at Chelsea, Ballack stated that he hoped to end his career at Stamford
Ballack's debut for Chelsea came on Monday July 31, 2006, during a
practice match at UCLA's intramural football pitch. Chelsea presented him to
the media the following day where the club also gave him his favoured number
13 shirt, worn throughout his career. On August 27, 2006, Ballack earned his
English League debut for Chelsea against Blackburn Rovers, and his UEFA
Champions League debut for Chelsea against Werder Bremen.
Ballack scored his first goal for Chelsea on September 21, 2006 in the
Champions League group stage match against Werder Bremen. He received his
first straight red card of his career in Chelsea's 1-0 win over Liverpool on
September 17, 2006, after being judged to have stamped on Mohamed Sissoko's
leg. Ballack scored his first goal in the English League on October 21, 2006
against Portsmouth at home with a header. His first FA Cup goal came in the
109th minute in a match against Blackburn Rovers on April 15, 2007. This
goal resulted in Chelsea progressing into the FA Cup final. He scored eight
goals in all competitions for the club in the 2006–07 season, including a
fantastic free-kick against Everton at Goodison Park, as well as a superb
half-volley against FC Porto which sent Chelsea through to the quarterfinals
of the UEFA Champions League.
On April 28, 2007, Chelsea released a statement on their official
website, informing fans that Ballack had undergone ankle surgery in Munich.
As a result of the surgery, Ballack did not play in the FA Cup Final against
Manchester United, which Chelsea won 1–0 through Didier Drogba's extra time
goal. This was Ballack's second trophy this season, his first being the
Chelsea left Ballack out of their Champions League squad for the 2007-08
group stage as they realised that his injury would prevent him from playing
any useful part and preferred to select the fully-fit Steve Sidwell. The
German international had an ankle operation in the summer and Chelsea could
not take the risk of him not regaining full fitness before the end of the
Group Stage. Thus, Ballack could not play in the Champions League before the
knockout stages began in February.
The club was only able to select 23 out of a possible 25 players for their
Champions League squad due to the new UEFA regulations on
'association-trained players' and 'club-trained players'. Due to this
regulation Chelsea were also unable to select young player Scott Sinclair
and could only pick 23 players as their only 'club-trained player' was John
Terry. For this reason it was deemed unwise to gamble on Ballack being fit
at some point.
He was absent for eight months with an ankle injury, during which he
feared that his football career might be in danger of ending as he was
getting older. He made his return to the side in Chelsea's 2–0 Carling Cup
win over Liverpool on December 19. Ballack tallied an assist late in the
game to striker Andriy Shevchenko. On December 26, Ballack made his league
return in a thrilling game against Aston Villa which ended 4–4. He came on
for Frank Lampard in the 26th minute after the latter had picked up a thigh
injury. In first-half stoppage time, he won a penalty after being brought
down in the box by Zat Knight which Andriy Shevchenko converted. In the 88th
minute, with the scores tied at 3–3, Ballack stepped up to take a free-kick
which he buried into the bottom left corner of the goal, capping off an
excellent league return, but the match ended in a 4–4 draw.
Ballack captained the Chelsea team in the absence of captain John Terry,
vice captain Frank Lampard in a 2–1 win over Newcastle on December 29, 2007.
Ballack then played his 50th game in a Chelsea shirt in a 2–1 win against
Fulham in which he scored the winning goal for Chelsea. He also scored the
only goal that won the match for Chelsea against Reading to extend the
blues' winning streak to a record of 9. Ballack has since become an
influential player at Stamford Bridge and is credited with the new dawn of
Avram Grant. Despite initial doubts over the partnership with Frank Lampard
in midfield, the pair seemed to have shrugged off the initial problems and
they are working well together. Michael Ballack is now part of the new look
Chelsea. On March 1 Ballack scored against West Ham in Chelsea's 4–0 win.
And, on March 5, he scored again, this time against Olympiacos CFP in the
UEFA Champions League Round of 16 in a 3-0 win.
With Chelsea's progress to the 2007–2008 Champions League Quarter-Finals,
Michael Ballack is the only player to have reached the Champions League
Quarter-Finals with four different clubs. He scored the winning goal in the
2-0 win in the 2nd leg of the Quarter-Finals against Fenerbahçe S.K., a
victory that secured Chelsea a place in the Semi-Finals.
Ballack continued to score vital goals and on April 26, 2008, he scored a
header and a penalty to give Chelsea a 2-1 win over Manchester United. He
was named Man of The Match for his performance. It brought the two teams
level in the race for the Premier League title only two matchdays before the
end of the season.
The season ended on a low note for Ballack as Chelsea finished runners up
in the Carling Cup, Premier League and UEFA Champions League. This completed
a treble horror for Chelsea and Ballack. On 29 June 2008 Germany, captatined
by Ballack, lost to Spain 1-0 in the final of Euro 2008. This became the
second season in Ballack's career that he was runner up for four major
On March 26, 1996, Ballack debuted for the national U21 team's encounter
with Denmark, shortly after signing for Chemnitz. In all, he played 19
matches for this side, scoring four goals. Then, following his move to
Kaiserslautern, national coach Berti Vogts called him up to the senior team.
Ballack's first appearance, however, did not come until April 28, 1999,
when he came on as a substitute for Dietmar Hamann in a match against
Ballack only played 63 minutes at Euro 2000. In the 2002 FIFA World Cup
he scored in matches against USA and South Korea during the knock-out rounds
as Germany reached the final, from which he was suspended.
Following Euro 2004, Jürgen Klinsmann replaced Rudi Völler at the helm of
the national team and made Ballack the side's captain. Ballack is one of
five national team captains in the current Chelsea team, along with Didier
Drogba (Ivory Coast captain), Andriy Shevchenko (Ukraine captain), Michael
Essien (Ghana captain) and John Terry (England captain). In the 2006 FIFA
World Cup he was unable to start in Germany's first game against Costa Rica
due to a calf strain, but appeared in the following five matches. Germany
were eliminated in the semi-finals, but they managed to clinch 3rd place. He
was named Man of the Match in the games against Ecuador and Argentina,
and was included in FIFA's World Cup All Star Team.
On 6 February 2008, Ballack played his first match since returning from
injury in a 3-0 friendly win over Austria.
Ballack started and captained Germany's first game of the UEFA Euro 2008
tournament against Poland. He scored a powerful free kick against Austria to
secure Germany a 1-0 win and a place in the quarter-finals. In the
quarter-finals he scored against Portugal to make the score 3-1 in their 3-2
win after feed by Bastian Schweinsteiger free kick in 60th minute. He
muscled his way past his Chelsea teammate Paulo Ferreira for his goal and
helped Germany to the semi-finals of the 2008 European Championships. He
captained Germany in the final of Euro 2008, losing 1-0 to Spain. He was
named to UEFA's Team of the Tournament.
Ballack is married to Simone Lambe and they have three children: Louis,
Emilio, and Jordi.
- German Footballer of the Year : 2002,2003,2005
- UEFA Club Midfielder of the Year : 2002
- Selected in FIFA's 100 Greatest Living Players
- Soccer Digest World Player of the Year : 2002
- Bundesliga : FC Kaiserslautern 1998, Bayern Munich 2003, 2005, 2006
- German Cup : Bayern Munich 2003, 2005, 2006
- Football League Cup : Chelsea 2007
- UEFA Champions League : Bayer Leverkusen 2002, Chelsea 2008
- Bundesliga : Bayer Leverkusen 1999, 2000, 2002, Bayern Munich 2004
- Premier League : Chelsea 2007, 2008
- German Cup : Bayer Leverkusen 2002
- Football League Cup : Chelsea 2008
German national team
- FIFA World Cup : Runner-up 2002
- UEFA European Football Championship : Runner-up 2008
- FIFA World Cup : Bronze medallist 2006
- FIFA Confederations Cup Bronze medallist: 2005
Champions League Best Midfielder
Footballer of the Year
Footballer of the Year
he is best player
he is a great footballer
ballack ? ..its all about C. Ronaldo and W.Rooney. now those two are some one to
Michael Ballack the best in the world!!!
michael ballack is top midfielder
goalscorer in history of europe
he score 35 goal in 75 matches
for germany .. Luís Figo is second with 32 goals in 127 matches for portugal
national team .
awesome footballer!!! and he is cute
Ballack is the best!!!
GOALS SCORING MACHINE FOR GERMANY. MOST IMPORTANT FOR GERMANY. BEST MIDFIELDER
EVER, IN THE WORLD CUP. THIS GUY IS THE BEST. WITH CHELSEA HE WILL BE THE BEST
AND BE THE CAPTAIN.
he is my hero/role model I want to be just like him
He´s without a doubt the BEST!!!
He is simply the
I think didier drogba is the best he has pace power and good
in the air he is to gud but then there is cristiano ronaldo if they were on the
same team that would be great because they both have quality from aj don killa
he has already scored a goal for chelsea against werder bremen
his girl friend is Simone Lambe not Victoria Fusz
Superb midfielder can score goal by long range shots.