Ballack Real prospect

BERLIN - Real Madrid coach Bernd Schuster insisted yesterday that German captain Michael Ballack could still transfer from Chelsea to the Spanish giants, providing he drops his wage demands.

BERLIN - Real Madrid coach Bernd Schuster insisted yesterday that German captain Michael Ballack could still transfer from Chelsea to the Spanish giants, providing he drops his wage demands.

The 30-year-old is out of favour at Chelsea and was not included in the English side's Champions League squad for the group stages. He has been linked with a move to Spain. But the German midfielder will have to reduce his wage demands first, Schuster said.

"The door of Real is not closed for Michael, his footballing qualities are always there, they will still exist in six months, but it is essentially a question of money," Schuster told German sports magazine Kicker.

Schuster said negotiations have taken place this summer between Real, Chelsea and Ballack's agent, but the issue had stumbled over the question of wages.

"No player at Real is paid like him and we do not want to set a precedent."

Negotiations look set to continue in January when the next transfer window opens, implied the German coach. - Sapa-AFP

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