The Seattle Sounders have confirmed they are not pursuing a transfer for Michael Ballack. (Photo by Friedemann Vogel/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Not to be too much of a wet blanket, but rumors that the Seattle Sounders are pursuing Michael Ballack appear to have no basis in reality. At least, that's the plainly obvious way to read comments Sounders GM Adrian Hanauer made to Sounder at Heart.
"Although Michael Ballack is a player that we have admired for many years, he is not a player that we are currently pursuing," Hanauer said in an email.
Ballack has often been mentioned in connection to the Sounders, presumably because the front office is believed to have an affinity for German players (although no German has ever played here) and many would like to see them add more of an attack-minded central midfielder. The source in the Goal.com article that identifies the Sounders as pursuing Ballack could very well be using those criteria or just making stuff up.
Sounders fans should probably be somewhat relieved by this news. Not only would Ballack be expensive -- he's reportedly hoping to get somewhere in the neighborhood of $6 million a year -- but he's also 35 years old and has not been allowed to go 90 minutes in a game since Dec. 17.